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Ireland's Strongest Presence yet at Venice Architecture Biennale

Published: Thursday, July 05, 2012


(Photographs by Leon Farrell)

With three Irish practices invited to exhibit alongside the country’s official representation – heneghen peng – the 2012 Venice Architecture Biennale is set to be Ireland’s strongest presence yet. Grafton Architects and O’Donnell + Tuomey were chosen by Biennale Director, David Chipperfield to participate in the international section, while Clancy Moore are to be included in the Backstage Architecture exhibition and book, a show presenting work by 56 architects under the age of 40, selected from around the globe. “Never before were more Irish architects invited to exhibit at Venice”, said Jimmy Deenihan, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht at the official launch at the National Gallery of Ireland on 5 July.

The Minister formally announced Ireland’s participation, which is developed by Commissioner Elizabeth Francis, Curator John McLaughlin and participants heneghen peng architects.  Dublin-based heneghan peng are currently working in three continents and are the architects responsible for the new Giant's Causeway Visitors’ Centre in Antrim, the Central Park Bridge at the London Olympics and the new Museum at the Pyramids in Egypt.

Their exhibition, titled ‘Shifting Ground’ is one of 55 national pavilions and presents Ireland to hundreds of thousands at one of the most important architectural showcases in the world.  At the heart of the exhibit, which was coordinated by Ireland at Venice Commissioner, Elizabeth Francis, and Curator, John McLaughlin, is the idea that contemporary Irish architecture has a global identity bound up in transnational collaborations of world-class work.

Speaking at the launch Mr. Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht said:“Ireland is one of the most globalised countries in the world and heneghan peng embodies that in the architectural arena As an Irish-based practice currently working across four continents on a wide range of competition-winning projects, Heneghan Peng epitomizes the impact that Irish architects can make in the world. it is hoped that the Venice Biennale will assist further in recognition and further success for Irish architecture worldwide.”

John McLaughlin, Curator of Ireland at Venice who selected Heneghan Peng said, “Heneghan Peng exemplify the globally networked ways of making architecture that are now possible, and as an emerging international practice they demonstrate the direction in which Irish architecture can evolve in the future.”

The 13th International Architecture Exhibition - la Biennale di Venezia opens to the public on 29 August 2012 and continues until 25 November 2012. Ireland at Venice is an initiative of Culture Ireland in partnership with The Arts Council of Ireland. Supported by Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, The Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland and Arup.


'Shifting Ground'
Venue: Artiglierie building of the ARSENALE
Dates: Inauguration Monday August 27th 2012 at 5.30pm



Categories: Architecture | Exhibitions

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