„GLOBE“ – Shape your future!
First of all I shall say we have succeeded to mark us in the Congress, where congregated 10,000 architects, engineers, researchers and students. All efforts including ours gathered under the main theme of the Congress “DESIGN 2050” provided the participants with opportunities to discuss the future architecture and cities through the various aspects.
Newly launched website (www.baua-architects.org), featuring the process around the exhibition, information about who we are and what we do, linking also to websites of each country's architects' union. This is envisioned to become a common platform for sharing information among 3 Baltic States.
When considering nature of the Congress and scale of the whole exhibitions happening simultaneously, we thought it was necessary to communicate through a simple but strong concept to present who we are and what we think. We prefered to answer to the main theme of the Congress than exhibiting the built projects and proposals from 3 Baltic States on boards, models or videos. Through the open competition held at the beginning of this year we searched for ideas meeting our demand. The winning proposal by Mark Grimitliht, an Estonian student was to incorporate „Globe“, 2-meter diameter ball of modelling clay, which was a playground where everyone could demonstrate their vision of the year 2050, thus the visions would be the future of our environment. Every single step we make creates some influence towards the future. We believed this rather bold and poetic concept of the exhibition would carry our message to the participants and visitors of the Congress.
Contemporary architecture is questioned if it can play a significant role to support quality of human life and surrounding environment in the year 2050 and beyond. After experiencing the disaster hit in the northern part of Japan, our responsibilities especially weigh heavier. We, BAUA are sure that neither one single vision nor one super star can create suitable environment in this task. The future is a collection of action by all participants. What we provided was to be a platform for discussions and demonstrations through the playfull material which everyone has played in childhood, not restricting imagination. In other words it was to represent simulation how our environment develops by series of actions and negotiations of different players.
For construction of the ball we decided to make a shell in Estonia, which was to be covered with clay in Japan. We produced the shell with help of Jass Kaselaan, an Estonian sculptor and shipped out by a sea container at the end of July. The shell was delivered barely on time to the exhibition hall due to the two huge typhoon hits to Japan that caused last minute hussle to have our shell processed by the customs. We reserved two days for installation and a workshop session prior to the exhibition opening for initiating the first generation of visions to invite following interactions. The BAUA delegation together with Japanese students who volunteered from several universities finished installing the exhibition 4 hours before the time limit. We were first afraid of reserved nature of the Japanese but they just couldn't wait for the workshop to start molding their visions. Simply they loved playing with the clay. Their playful and artistic imagination surpassed far beyond our initial expectation. Their first-generation vision attracted further interactions and interventions of the other visitors from different countries. All visitors who enjoyed playing with clay participated creation of our future. Through the smiles and positive comments of the visitors we saw we made greate communication. Furthermore, we showed our optimistic view towards the future which could be enriched by participation of people. If time allows, we could have studied what motivated people and what was common behaviour or pattern generated for better feedback for guiding the future in practice. Anyhow, we have fullfilled our initial tasks.
As a appointed curator representing 3 Baltic States as well as a Japanese-born architect practicing in Estonia I am honoured to participate the whole process and realize the work with help of BAUA-related persons and the local Japanese. Lastly I would like thank to all people who took part as well as all sponsors.
Curator, BAUA exhibition