Spontaneous Interventions: Venice 2012

United States Representation at the 13th Venice Architecture Biennale To Be Organized by the Institute for Urban Design

The Institute for Urban Design of New York City has been selected by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) to organize United States representation at the 13th Venice Architecture Biennale, to take place from August through November 2012. The Institute will present the exhibition Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good, which documents projects initiated by American architects and designers aimed at bringing positive change to the public realm. 

Spontaneous Interventions: Design Actions for the Common Good
In recent years, there has been a nascent movement of designers acting on their own initiative to solve problematic urban situations, creating new opportunities and amenities for the public. Provisional, improvisational, guerrilla, unsolicited, tactical, temporary, informal, unplanned, participatory, open-source—these are just a few of the words that have been used to describe this growing body of work. Spontaneous Interventions will frame an archive of compelling, actionable strategies, ranging from urban farms to guerilla bike lanes, temporary architecture to poster campaigns, urban navigation apps to crowdsourced city planning. These efforts cut across boundaries, addressing architecture, landscape, infrastructure, and the digital universe, and run the gamut from symbolic to practical, physical to virtual, whimsical to serious. But they share an optimistic willingness to venture outside conventional practice and to deploy fresh tactics to make the world a more sustainable, accessible, inclusive place.

We will soon be launching a blog to be an interactive platform to share projects, to document our organization process, and to expand the conversation about unconventional tactics to improve, reclaim, or enliven public spaces. Each week, we will pose a different question relevant to Spontaneous Interventions, and we hope that you will take part in the debate.