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Mark

Towards the City of the Future:
Shenzhen Biennial of Urbanism and Architecture 2019
Milano Arch Week 2019
Triennale Milano, Salone d’Onore
Sunday, May 26 2019, 11:30 - 13:00

With:
Tullio Avoledo (Writer); Daniele Belleri (Partner, CRA Design); Edoardo Bruno (Researcher, Politecnico di Torino); Fabio Cavallucci (Art critic and curator); Adalberto Del Bo (Professor, Politecnico di Milano); Anastasia Kucherova (Special Projects manager, Stefano Boeri Architetti); Meng Jianmin (Chinese Academy of Engineering); Carlo Ratti (Director, MIT Senseable City Lab)
Moderator: Manuela Lietti (Art critic and curator)


On May 26 at 11:30 am, the Triennale di Milano will hold the first of a series of meetings conceived to get to know in detail the 8th edition of the Biennial of Urbanism and Architecture in Shenzhen (UABB). This event is part of Milan’s 2019 Arch Week. The curators of the two sections of the next Biennale—the most prestigious in the field in Asia, will attend this talk that aims to explore the topics of the next Biennale: the links between architecture, technological development and society.

The “Ascending City” team is led by art critic and curator Fabio Cavallucci, and Chinese architect and scholar Meng Jianmin as chief curators. Italian-born but longtime Beijing-resident curator Manuela Lietti is part of the team as well.

The "Eyes of the City" team is headed by chief curator Carlo Ratti, professor of Urban Technologies at MIT in Boston and founder of the CRA design studio. The academic curator is the South China-Torino Lab (Polytechnic University of Turin and SCUT), while the Politecnico di Milano will organize various educational activities.

This massive Italian curatorial presence sparked the idea of launching a pre-biennial series of discussions in Milan. This cycle will then continue in Shenzhen as well as in other cities in the world, with contributions from some of the greatest contemporary thinkers, and will set the theoretical basis for the exhibitions.

“Towards the City of the Future” is the title of this first talk, which addresses some of the themes of “Urban Interactions,” the title of the 2019 Biennale (opening scheduled for December 6). The future is in fact the protagonist of the upcoming edition of this important Asian event, which takes place in a city and area—Shenzhen and the Pearl River Bay—that are protagonists of the greatest development the world has witnessed in the last forty years, and likely for decades to come. It is not by chance that the Chinese government is betting on a further boost in the region, after having built the longest bridge in the world between Hong Kong and Macao, transforming the gulf into a single large conurbation. It is in Shenzhen, moreover, that the biggest Chinese IT companies are based, from Tencent to Huawei, and it is there that the great innovations of the next waves in technology are studied, from self-driving cars to facial recognition systems, from 5G to artificial intelligence. It is therefore a natural choice that in this city and through this Biennial we should ask ourselves questions about the future, about what will actually change in our lives when we enter a completely automated world, and how we will be able to maintain control over technological development, as active citizens, not just passive users.

It is under these vibrant economic and technological circumstances that the two curatorial projects that are presented on this occasion were born. “Eyes of the City,” with a team led by Carlo Ratti and the South China-Torino lab, analyzes the epochal changes taking place in our cities, where even buildings, streets, shops and homes acquire the ability to “see," equipped with control and response systems, so that the city space becomes an active space for the first time. The project is developed through an open call to architects and designers, technology experts, researchers and theorists, whose deadline is set for May 31 (www.eyesofthecity.net). “Ascending City,” on the other hand, whose curatorial team encompasses a diverse range of professions beyond architects, adopts a more "humanistic" approach, verifying the presumed effects of the technological development of the cities, first and foremost in the behavior of its inhabitants, through various cultural spheres. The two projects are intertwined in the discussion of the conference moderated by Manuela Lietti, with Fabio Cavallucci, Carlo Ratti and Meng Jianmin (both on video), Daniele Belleri, Partner at the design studio Carlo Ratti Associati, Edoardo Bruno, Researcher of South China-Torino lab, Adalberto Del Bo, Professor at Il Politecnico di Milano and Anastasia Kucherova, Special Projects manager at Stefano Boeri Architetti.

The special guest for the event at the Milan Triennale, invited by the “Ascending City” team, is Tullio Avoledo, an Italian writer from Friuli-Venezia Giulia who is also an esteemed author of science fiction books. In fact “Ascending City” interprets the evolution of technologies in the city through different means, included the methodology of science fiction. With team members Wu Yan and Chen Qiufan, and advisor Liu Cixin—a writer with such strong cult status in China and beyond that US President Barack Obama requested to meet him during an official visit to Beijing—science fiction plays a core role in the construction of the exhibition and in imagining what will be our cities in the coming years. Tullio Avoledo is one of the most interesting Italian writers in terms of the interweaving of reality and futuristic fantasy, author among the others of the book Ask the Light (Marsilio, 2016) which focuses on an architect who in a dystopic future tries to save humanity from its mistakes.

The themes of the Biennale are therefore addressed from a wider perspective, touching on the most important aspects of the two exhibitions, but always with a keen eye on the human dimension, asking how mankind could, in a future that by now does not seem so far away, make full use of the multiple possibilities of automation systems and means of communication to grow as individuals and as a society, and thus avoid becoming the unnecessary leftovers of the Anthropocene era.



Bi-City Biennial of Urbanism and Architecture, Shenzhen 8th edition
Urban Interactions - December 2019-February 2020

Ascending City Section
Chief Curators. Men Jianming, Fabio Cavallucci
Co-Curator: Science and Human Imagination Center of Southern University of Science and Technology (Wu Yan)
Executive Curators: Chen Qiufan, Manuela Lietti, Wang Kuan, Zhang Li

Eyes of The City Section
Chief Curator: Carlo Ratti
Academic Curator: South China - Torino Lab (SCUT - Sun Yimin, Politecnico di Torino - Michele Bonino)
Executive Curators: Daniele Belleri [CRA], Edoardo Bruno, Xu Haohao

Curator of GBA Academy: Politecnico di Milano (Adalberto Del Bo)

Towards the City of the Future:
Shenzhen Biennial of Urbanism and Architecture 2019

Milano Arch Week 2019
Triennale Milano, Salone d’Onore
Address: Viale Emilio Alemagna, 6, 20121 Milano MI
Sunday, May 26 2019, 11:30 - 13:00
https://www.triennale.org

UABB:
Bi-City Biennale of UrbanismArchitecture (UABB) is currently the only biennial exhibition in the world that is based exclusively on the set themes of URBANISM AND URBANIZATION. Co-organized by the two neighboring and closely interacting cities of Shenzhen and Hong Kong, UABB situates itself within the regional context of the rapidly urbanizing Pearl River Delta, concerns itself with globally common urban issues, extensively communicates and interacts with the wider public, is presented using expressions of contemporary visual culture, and engages in international and avant-garde dimensions as well as discourses of public interest.
http://www.szhkbiennale.org

MILANO ARCH WEEK:
Milano Arch Week is a week of lectures, conversations, workshops, and itineraries on the main challenges of contemporary urban transformations.
Milano Arch Week explores the future of architecture and cities through a polyphony of voices: architects, urban planners, landscape designers, scientists, philosophers, artists, and curators from all over the world.
Milano Arch Week 2019 explores the relationship between Anthropocene and Architecture within and across the urban contexts worldwide. Milano Arch Week 2019 will investigate cities and architecture as systems of flows; cities and architecture as integrated systems of artifice and nature; cities and architecture as places shaped by a contemporary plurality of subjects, individuals, trajectories; cities and architecture as places where the human species has the opportunity to reverse the disastrous effects of climate change.
https://www.milanoarchweek.eu


Mark
Bi-City Biennale of UrbanismArchitecture (UABB) is currently the only biennial exhibition in the world that is based exclusively on the set themes of URBANISM AND URBANIZATION. Co-organized by the two neighboring and closely interacting cities of Shenzhen and Hong Kong, UABB situates itself within the regional context of the rapidly urbanizing Pearl River Delta, concerns itself with globally common urban issues, extensively communicates and interacts with the wider public, is presented using expressions of contemporary visual culture, and engages in international and avant-garde dimensions as well as discourses of public interest.
©UABB