chancellor's bungalow inserted within german pavilion at venice architecture biennale
 
chancellor's bungalow inserted within german pavilion at venice architecture biennale chancellor's bungalow inserted within german pavilion at venice architecture biennale
jun 19, 2014

chancellor's bungalow inserted within german pavilion at venice architecture biennale

chancellor’s bungalow inserted within german pavilion at venice architecture biennale
photo © CLA / photo by bas princen

 

 

 

for the 2014 venice architecture biennale, a full scale replica of bonn’s kanzlerbungalow (chancellor’s bungalow) has been inserted within the german pavilion, producing a dynamic and engaging architectural montage. curated by architects alex lehnerer and savvas ciriacidis, of CIRIACIDISLEHNERER architekten, the exhibition responds to the overall theme of ‘absorbing modernity: 1914-2014,’ by looking back on a century full of political and cultural fractures and continuities, in which the country repeatedly redefined itself. at its core, the presented amalgamation questions representational architecture, by creating a dialogue between the two built forms as well as their respective societal eras, governmental systems, and statements on nationhood.

 

 

 


an interview with alex lehnerer and savvas ciriacidis at bungalow germania
video courtesy of la biennale di venezia

 

 

 

 

two buildings of national and historical importance anchor the project within the past century: the german pavilion and the chancellor’s bungalow in bonn, realized in 1964 by sep ruf, a german architect and designer who practiced in the bauhaus tradition. the original structure was popularized by the west german media during the tenure of the bonn republic, consequently serving as the ‘nation’s living room’. when the capital of the federal republic of germany moved to berlin in 1999, the importance and identity kanzlerbungalow wained, losing its visibility in popular culture before disappearing from public consciousness. the bungalow, in tandem with the pavilion in venice, represent two distinct eras of german history, two political systems, and two architectural languages. 

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
the presented amalgamation questions representational architecture
image © designboom

 

 

 

at the biennale, the pavilion and bungalow enter into dialogue through a intimate architectural montage. a 1:1 partial replica of the bungalow creates a publicly accessible spatial installation in its juxtaposition with the pavilion’s architecture. the exhibition brings together ideas, moments in time, places and spaces. the bungalow’s fundamental materials and elements act as as media that convey political gestures from history and symbolic actions transferrable from bonn to venice. the union of two buildings subsequently forms a theoretical and physical ‘third space’, which interrupts the existing organization and previous characteristics of the original spaces: one building becomes the key to the other. the pavilion references its historic identity through the bungalow, creating a dual legibility. 

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
the installation creates a dialogue between the two built forms as well as their respective societal eras
image © designboom

 

 

 

commissioners alex lehnerer and savvas ciriacidis and project lead sandra oehy explain the installation:

 

this year, for the first time, countries participating in the 14th international architecture exhibition – la biennale di venezia were asked to engage with a shared theme. artistic director rem koolhaas asked each country to consider the development of their respective national architecture in response to the motto ‘absorbing modernity: 1914–2014’. his hypothesis is that within the field of architecture, characteristics of national diversity have receded over the past century in favor of a global, modern architectural language.

 

‘this perspective on architecture and its history is intrinsically connected to national history. in venice, we want to bring together the overlapping narrative strands of the nation and the architecture it has produced over the past century. rather than presenting a chronological exhibit with an explicit beginning and end, however, we have chosen to do so by constructing and staging a particular architectural moment.

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
when guests enter the pavilion they suddenly find themselves in the low-ceilinged interior of the bungalow
photo © CLA / photo by bas princen

 

 

 

‘we want to make these two opposing political buildings speak in venice, and instigate a conversation where they are on an equal footing. in terms of the theme of this year’s biennale, we chose to begin our one-hundred-year history of modernism in germany in 2014 with a second focus on 1964, the year in which the german pavilion in venice was last renovated and the kanzlerbungalow in bonn was completed. our idea began as a one-liner: we’ll ‘remake’ the kanzlerbungalow and ‘cross-cut”’ it with the german pavilion in venice.

 

‘we like seemingly simple premises:the precise details of a high-concept notion deepen it, helping it to become richer and more complicated, create contradictions, and ultimately turn the one-liner into an entire story. at the same time, we had to confirm our intuition that this straightforward action would create a meaningful, exciting, and far-reaching yet unstable connection to the history of the last hundred years of modernism—reaching right into the present, and perhaps even into the future.’

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
the elements of the two architectures lose their immediate, clear functional role
photo © CLA / photo by bas princen

 

 

 

‘there is also a dual interiorization, in the sense that each building is constructed inside of the other and the bungalow, with its staged domesticity, very much gives off the impression of a private interior. for us, the interesting point is not the tension of the contrast itself, but the tension that arises from the interplay of discord and harmony. simultaneously, the boundaries disappear between actual building and the process of exhibiting architecture.’

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
the exhibition brings together ideas, moments in time, places and spaces
image © designboom

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
the bungalow’s kitchen is reconstructed within the pavilion in venice
image © designboom

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
an original couch is integrated within the new design
image © designboom

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
rooms are articulated around the central atrium
photo by andrea avezzù / courtesy la biennale di venezia

german pavilion venice architecture biennale designboom
the installation is created through the intersection of the replicated kanzlerbungalow with the existing pavilion
photo © CLA / photo by bas princen

 

 

bungalow germania
alex lehnerer, savvas ciriacidis (CIRIACIDISLEHNERER architekten)
commissioners: alex lehnerer, savvas ciriacidis (CIRIACIDISLEHNERER architekten)
venue: pavilion at giardini, venice

 

project lead & scientific researcher: sandra oehy (project lead & managing curator), ETH zurich

flavia ghidossi (student assistant), ETH zurich

realization & exhibition design: CIRIACIDISLEHNERER architekten, zürich
project architects: carolin lehnerer, benedikt heesen, eugenio squassabia
writer: quinn latimer
filmmakers: kaufmann gehring i tobias kaufmann & dominik gehring
graphic design: thomas dahm graphic design & visual research
strategic advice, communications, event management: sally below, sally below cultural affairs
team: nicole opel, sarah reiche, berrit pöppelmeier, hjördis hoffmann, andré herzig
partner in venice (event & pavilion management): tomas ewald, solmarino
executive architect in venice: dr. clemens f. kusch, CFK architetti
team: martin weigert
exhibition construction & logistics: NUSSLI group
team: marco leuenberger, christoph thüer
ETH zürich: prof. dr. uta hassler, prof. dr. philip ursprung

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
    all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

    PRODUCT LIBRARY

    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    architecture news

    ×
    keep up with our daily and weekly stories
    493,017 subscribers
    - see sample
    - see sample