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2021 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism

Por e-flux Architecture, em 03/12/2020
2021 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism

2020 Seoul Pre-Biennale at the Seoul Hall of Urbanism & Architecture. Courtesy Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism.

CROSSROADS, Building the Resilient City
2021 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism
September 16–October 31, 2021


Entitled CROSSROADS Building the Resilient City, the Seoul Biennale 2021 will attempt to respond to the complexity of the relationships that shape our cities nowadays and to the pivotal moment that humanity is facing by drafting, with its contributions a manifesto in favor of a more sustainable city.

The Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2021 will be the first global architectural event entirely produced on the aftermath of a pandemic that has altered and questioned the foundations of our modern, technological civilization.

CROSSROADS Building the Resilient City will feature works focusing on cities—understood as the superposition and interactions of inhabitants, buildings, infrastructures, flows and regulations—to examine, research and exhibit how they can utilized as positive assets toward the development of a sustainable planet. Moreover, the 2021 Seoul Biennale intends to assemble different forms of intelligence to reflect on the city of the future as a more sustainable, resilient, and comfortable place for its inhabitants.

Echoing the dynamics of urban planning, the Seoul Biennale 2021 will gather participants representing a broad range of expertise architects and urbanists, representatives from cities and metropolises, but also experts in science, engineering, humanities, artists, academics, and students.

The city of Seoul will host this event with about 200 artists from all over the world through 5 exhibitions.

The wind rose was chosen as the symbol for the event. Each of the 5 colors represents a “crossroad,” a figure chosen to analyze and understand the present moment and to anticipate and suggest future developments of cities.

2020 The Pre-Biennale of Seoul Biennale, October 29-30
Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG), the organizer of the Seoul Biennale, held the Pre-Biennale event in minimal contact due to the Covid-19, which was held online between Seoul and Paris. In Seoul, it was held at the Seoul Hall of Urbanism and Architect with officials from SMG, ambassadors from the participating cities and curators of 2021 Seoul Biennale. In Paris, it was held at the Hôtel de Ville (City Hall) with the Deputy Mayor of Paris, General Director, and Korean Ambassador. The event was followed by presentations by the Scientific Committee members and curators, starting with the announcement by the general director. It is available for viewers on the Seoul Biennale's YouTube channel. The second day, live project Suspicious Footprints consisting of young architects and the project Looping City which are participating works in the first ever biennale held. In particular, the project Looping city developed a robot called TUBO, and it is a meaningful and advanced work and project like this is also the goal of the Seoul Biennale. Pre-Biennale aired live through online paltforms and now available on YouTube under Seoul biennale’s official channel.

Despite the situation, COVID19 will not seem to affect the opening of the 2021 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism. Moreover, it can be a chance to seek for the possibility to develop. Just as the General Director mentioned he hopes that the Seoul Biennale of Urban and Architecture will live and breathe and draw a milestone, particularly through the development of more interactivity and new digital offerings. A year before the event; the pre-biennial confirmed a strong commitment and enthusiasm for this cultural event, which we hope will reach a new maturity and further develop its international scope.

"2020 Seoul Pre-Biennale" was a chance to discover the ambitions of the SBAU 2021. See you next year to share the creativity and inspiring visions of designers from all over the world!