The Garden of Privatised Delights, the British Pavilion at Venice Biennale 2021

Biennale-venezia-2021
Entrance to the British Pavilion at Venice Architecture Biennale 2021

The British Council presents The Garden of Privatised Delights, the exhibition of the British Pavilion at Venice Architecture Biennale 2021. “How will we live together?” the 17th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia is curated by Hashim Sarkis and open to the public until November 21, 2021.

The exhibition, curated by Madeleine Kessler adn Manijeh Verghese, is inspired by Dutch artist Hieronymus Bosch’s triptych painting The Garden of Earthly Delights and answers the question How will we live together? of the title of Venice Architecture Biennale 2021. In the case of Great Britain, the exhibition calls for new thinking around privately owned public space in cities across the UK to improve its use, accessibility and management.

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High Street of Exchanges

“The past year has shown that the theme of the 2021 Biennale Architettura, ‘How will we live together?’, is one of the most important questions of our time. The British Council’s commission for the British Pavilion, The Garden of Privatised Delights, explores how we inhabit and share our environment (…). Madeleine Kessler and Manijeh Verghese demonstrate how great design can improve the inclusivity, accessibility and understanding needed to achieve that,” said Sevra Davis, Director of Architecture Design and Fashion del British Council and commissioner of the British Pavilion 2021.

Play With(out) Grounds

The British Pavilion: the exhibition path

The playful and provocative exhibition path features simulations of seven privatised public spaces, inviting visitors to consider how the design of public space can be improved to benefit the community. Some of the most common public spaces in the UK such as the youth center, the high street and the pub are represented along with proposals for their reuse.

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Exterior of To-i-let

“We are thrilled to finally be able to share The Garden of Privatised Delights at the British Pavilion at Venice Architecture Biennale 2021. The events of the past year have further highlighted the importance of accessible public space. This has inspired us and our amazing team of collaborators to test collaborative processes and design strategies, in order to propose ways in which public space can become more inclusive. By encouraging everyone to be part of this complex conversation, privatised public spaces have the potential to become genuine Gardens of Delight at the heart of all our towns and cities,” explained Manijeh Verghese and Madeleine Kessler, curators of the exhibition commissioned by the British Council for the British Pavilion. [Txt: Arianna Callocchia – Photo: Cristiano Corte, courtesy British Council]

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Garden of Delights