Dutch National Pavilion: Vacant NL

An installation that makes vacancy visible
Share
Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

1 / 6 Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

2 / 6 Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

3 / 6 Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

4 / 6 Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

5 / 6 Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy

6 / 6 Dutch National Pavilion, Vacant NL (2010), Venice Biennale, Italy


The clever and satisfying Dutch pavilion at the Venice Biennale focuses on the question of vacancy as a way to answer the Dutch government’s initiative to become a more innovative country. The project is housed in the Dutch pavilion, designed by Gerrit Rietveld in 1954 which, like all the Biennale pavilions, is in use only three months out of the year. This makes it one of thousands of Dutch government buildings that are vacant.

The installation makes this vacancy visible in many ways: all the vacant buildings are recreated in blue foam and suspended several metres above the floor, forming an irregularly perforated dropped ceiling when seen from below, and a tightly compacted blue city when seen from the balcony above. An Atlas of Dutch Vacancy shows each building, describing its typology, when it’s vacant and what can be done with it.

Rietveld Landscape, who curated the pavilion, worked with a multidisciplinary team of Jurgen Bey (designer), Joost Grootens (graphic designer), Ronald Rietveld (landscape architect), Erik Rietveld (philosopher/economist), Saskia van Stein (NAI curator) and Barbara Visser (visual artist), and an art piece on the wall uses string and drawings to show connections between existing architecture and the many people who worked on the project, creating a visual map of the links that could be formed by utilizing these vacant buildings for creative professionals.

 

By Sara Goldsmith
Project Editor, Architecture & Design, Phaidon


You May Also Like




ABOUT PHAIDON

Phaidon is the premier global publisher of the creative arts with over 1,500 titles in print. We work with the world's most influential artists, chefs, writers and thinkers to produce innovative books on art, photography, design, architecture, fashion, food and travel, and illustrated books for children. Phaidon is headquartered in London and New York City.
Read more