Sen. Legarda invites Filipinos to be part of Philippines first participation at Venice Architecture Biennale
(The Philippine Star) - September 18, 2015 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Another milestone has been reached as the Philippines participates, for the first time ever, at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. The announcement was made as the open call for curatorial proposals was revealed. 

“The success of this endeavor will be achieved through significant support and participation by the community. I urge talented and brilliant Filipinos to join the open call process and become part of this historical undertaking in Philippine architecture,” Senator Loren Legarda said.

The country’s participation at the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale was made possible through the cooperation of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the Office of Senator Loren Legarda. The three agencies were also responsible for the successful return of the Philippines to the 56th Venice Art Biennale after a 51-year absence.

Legarda, who pushed for the yearly participation of the Philippines in the Venice Biennale, said, “For me, architecture must not only reveal intellect or technical deftness; it should also be about spirit. I look forward to curatorial proposals that are able to communicate our realities as a nation. This platform will give voice to our people, how we overcome our struggles and use our distinctive resources through architecture.”

The call for curatorial proposal for a Philippine Pavilion is open to Filipino architects, curators, practising artists from the different disciplines, urban planners, ecological activists, geographers, historians and critics of space, heritage workers, and others.  Curators, as an individual or group, are urged to submit concepts, which will undergo a democratic selection process.

All curatorial proposals should be emailed on or before Oct. 7, to Submitted proposals will be deliberated upon by a panel of jurors to assess the most suitable curatorial proposal. The selected proposal will be announced on October 15, and will be realized as the Philippine Pavilion in Venice, Italy to be opened on May 28, 2016 and will run until Nov. 27, 2016.

As an important part of the selection process, consultation meetings will be held in Metro Manila, Visayas and Mindanao for engaged discussion and interaction among organizers and the public.

This Philippine Pavilion will be the official national representation of the country at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. Only one national pavilion for each participating country is recognized by La Biennale di Venezia.  NCCA chairperson Felipe de Leon, Jr. is the commissioner of the Philippine Pavilion.

Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena has been appointed as the director of the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale. He has stated that “there are several battles that need to be won and several frontiers that need to be expanded in order to improve the quality of built environment and the people’s quality of life.”  In the light of such vision and advocacy, he imagines the 2016 Exhibition to display “success stories worth to be told and exemplary cases worth to be shared where architecture did, is and will make a difference in those battles and frontiers.”

Open call proposal forms and details can be accessed at the

For information, email

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