Plumbing the System is the official Dutch contribution to the 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia 2023. The Pavilion is curated by architect and researcher Jan Jongert / Superuse Studios.

Architecture can be seen as an articulation of systems – economic, social, political – that shape the built environment and organize and regulate flows of people, activities, resources and ecologies Often based on extraction and exploitation, these systems seem so thoroughly entrenched as to appear immutable.

But in order to move towards a more sustainable, regenerative, and just future, many of these systems will need to be rethought.

In July 2022, Nieuwe Instituut and the Creative Industries Fund NL launched an open call for the Dutch pavilion’s parallel program. The call asked architects and landscape architects, urban planners, and spatial researchers to respond with proposals that expose the invisible flows of material, waste and labor hidden behind the exhibitions at the Biennale. Mapping and visualizing this metabolism could be a first step towards a Biennale that makes a positive, sustainable contribution to Venice’s ecosystem. More information about the selected projects by Onur Can Tepe and Crispijn van Sas, V8 Architects, and Ester van de Wiel can be found here.

Since the previous Biennale in 2021, the Nieuwe Instituut has been working closely with the commissioners of pavilions from other countries with the aim of ensuring that the presence of the pavilions will not harm the fragile ecosystem of the city, but have a positive effect on Venice as a livable city.

You can find more information here