Gehl in Venice

We have just returned from the 13th Architectural Biennale in Venice in which we successfully launched our Life Between Buildings Exhibit – comprised of a 12m circular video installation and the documentary film ‘The Human Scale’. The event was commemorated with an interesting discussion between Jan and the artist Olafur Eliasson whose work they agreed coalesces around ‘awareness of being in space’ through temporary moments in the case of Olafur’s installations, and the built human scale in the case of Jan’s. Naturally they couldn’t avoid discussing Venice itself and whilst Olafur expressed his discomfort at the city having become the ‘museum shop’ and it’s extreme commercialization Jan felt this was entirely because it holds the highest urban qualities and has attracted so many generations to it. He extended this to Strøget in Copenhagen saying that as a front-runner in high urban quality of the 20th century it has been a kind of ‘sacrificial lamb’ to extreme commercialization for all of the other fantastic high quality urban spaces that have come in its wake over the past couple of decades. A great dialogue between the artistic and architectural and human experiences in the city.

Jeff Risom participated in a discussion on Urban Life sponsored by the Danish Architectural Center.  Highlights of the discussion included the changing role of architects in cities where an emphasis on life is dominant, a debate around promoting a sense of usership rather than ownership of the public realm, and rather or not a Nordic identity can exist in areas as different as Copenhagen and Nuuk, the later with an urban population of 24000 people in an area the size of France.

From top; Gehl Architects were hosted by Louisiana MOMA at the Fondazione Giorgio Cini, Isola di San Giorgio Maggiore for the launch of Life Between Buildings exhibit and The Human Scale documentary, Monday saw Jeff Risom in conversation at the Danish pavilion with Bjarke Ingels, Kjetil Thorsen, Tina Saaby and Niels Bennetzen on Urban life hosted by DAC, Inside the exhibit ‘Life between Buildings’ and Vanessa, Solveijg and Camilla taking it all in.

From top; Andreas Dalsgaard, Jan Gehl, Hugh Nicholson and David Sim in conversation after the preview of the documentary The Human Scale, stills from New York project featured in the documentary, Olafur Eliasson, Synne Rifbjerg from Weekendavisen, Jan Gehl in conversation at the launch of the exhibit Life Between Buildings, Helle and whole team enjoy a fantastic evening eating and drinking between the buildings.

1 comment
  1. The Life Between Buildings exhibition was fantastic! The installation was extremely thought provoking and the overall design and imagery were beautiful. I’m looking forward to being able to purchase The Human Scale when it’s released. Is there any possibility that you will release The City at Walking Pace and Reclaim Public Space either on the Internet/this blog or along with The Human Scale documentary? The videos were so well done, I would love to have a copy and see them again.

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