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City to Dust

City to Dust is an installation by Studio L A in collaboration with Baukje Trenning. As a part of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia titled How will we live together? curated by Hashim Sarkis.

Just before the Biennale Architettura 2021 will open its doors Venice was an empty city where the beauty became visible again. It looked much more like the advertising cliches shared over the world, showing Venice without tourist groups, thus emphasizing its mythical dimension in the collective consciousness. This time, behind this beauty lies the world of the Coronavirus pandemic, which came out of the large-scale movement of groups of people flying from place to place without taking responsibility. Venice is one of the most popular destinations for these groups at the expense of its inhabitants. It’s therefore not a coincidence that the pandemic hit it so hard.

Today, the absence of mass tourism makes it possible to rethink new strategies for the city with a focus on Venetians and the places they inhabit. It is this new point of view that our installation intends to offer. Venice beauty, which attracts attention and visitors, simultaneously represents its biggest threat. The increasing number of tourists slowly brings the city closer to its demise. As visitors and participants of the Biennale Architettura, we inevitably take part in this dynamic. Through our installation, we allow visitors to experience this duality and to form a new perspective on the city, the human community and themselves.

City to Dust is an installation that the visitor impacts and becomes part of. It’s an installation that is continuously changing. The city of Venice is made in Terrazzo tiles, on the floor of one of the Arsenale spaces. The visitor is forced to cross the Terrazzo floor installation in order to enter the next space on their route. But if one is not careful enough, each step has a potential to slowly break away the city.

Each step is a confrontation with one’s own impact.

City to Dust is opened on May 19th by writer Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer. He took the first step and recited his written column City to Dust.

Studio L A in collaboration with Baukje Trenning
Design team: Lorien Beijaert, Arna Mačkić, Baukje Trenning
Production terrazzo floor: Tomaello BV Terrazzo & Concrete, the Netherlands
Research & Development terrazzo floor: Tomaello BV  i.c.w. Baukje Trenning & Studio L A
Photo’s: Marco Cappelletti
Build-up: Luigi D’Oro Studio & Alberto Corba

With the additional support of:
Creative Industries Fund NL
Van Eesteren-Fluck & Van Lohuizen Foundation
Embassy and Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
Tomaello BV Terrazzo & Concrete, the Netherlands

Many thanks to:
the Tomaello Terrazzo Team: Ali Hassan Tohow, Piotr Zwierz, Abdullah Said Jama, Ed Clarijs, Peter Mersch, Andre Bonk & Giulio Tomaello.
Ariane Ochoa, Dimitri Schutter and Jacco Handgraaf