“Welcome to the Vertical Village”, by MVRDV

La exposición "Bienvenidos a la Villa Vertical" se inauguró en el Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Seúl. En la exposición los visitantes caminan a través de un modelo gigante de un posible pueblo vertical, para experimentar su riqueza espacial y la tridimensionalidad. La muestra, abierta al público hasta el 7 de octubre de 2012, se compone de largometrajes, una escultura al aire libre y un gigante pueblo vertical compuesto por más de 700 objetos.

«Welcome to the Vertical Village» exhibition opened at Total Museum of Contemporary Art Seoul. In the exhibition visitors walk through a giant model of a possible Vertical Village to experience its spatial richness and three dimensionality. The show is open to public between June 20 and October 7 and features films, an outdoor sculpture and a giant vertical village made of more than 700 objects.

The show by MVRDV and the Why Factory was opened earlier in Taipei and is now in a totally new design at show in Seoul: a city under rapid transformation, the ideal environment to answer to the ‘block attack’ and propose alternatives. Under the title “Welcome to the Vertical Village” the exhibition explores the rapid urban transformation in East Asia, the qualities of urban villages and the potential to realize this in a much denser, vertical way as a radical alternative to the monotonous block architecture with identical standard apartments and its consequences for the city. The exhibition consists of analytical research, various movies, a documentary and animations, two software packages and a 3 meter tall sculpture of a possible Vertical Village developed by MVRDV and The Why Factory. Visitors can design their ideal house and compose their own Vertical Village with parametric software.

Total Museum of Contemporary Art (TMCA) in Seoul had invited MVRDV, The Why Factory and JUT Foundation for Arts and Architecture to move the Vertical Village exhibition to Seoul. The exhibition is developed as a large installation. Visitors experience a walk through a large 1:15 scale model of a vertical village composed of more than 700 objects, turning the museum into a Vertical Village itself. Outside a model of the Vertical Village is exhibited, which after the show will be shown permanently as a piece or public art at a small plaza in the city centre which is surrounded by grey monolithic buildings, emphasizing the quality of the urban village even more.

The pressure on the East Asian cities has lead to an increasing urbanization and densification during the last decades. It has made way for the construction of giant buildings, mostly towers, blocks and slabs. A ‘Block Attack’ that gradually replaces and scrapes away the more traditional low rise, small scale, often ‘lighter’ types of architecture and urbanism: the Hutong in Beijing, the small wooden houses in Tokyo, the villages in Singapore, the individual houses in Taipei, and in Seoul and other East Asian cities.

These urban villages form mostly intense and socially highly connected communities, with enormous individual identities and differentiations. One can speak of urban ecologies, communities that have evolved over the course of centuries. Their rapid, faceless replacements by large scale monolithic blocks, packed with identical apartment units offer a Western standard of living at an affordable price, but at the expense of differentiation, flexibility and individual expression.

Is there an alternative to this process? Can one imagine a new model for the development of East Asian cities? Can these areas be densified in such a way that the qualities of the traditional village are preserved? The Vertical Village is proposed as an contemporary alternative– a three-dimensional community that brings personal freedom, diversity, flexibility and neighbourhood life back into East Asian – and maybe even Western – cities.

Equal Books Publishers Seoul publish the Korean edition of ‘the Vertical Village’ catalogue, with added and updated to the English and Chinese edition. The book contains the ample research made comprehensible with countless colour illustrations. It features detailed case studies for Seoul, Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Djakarta, Tokyo and Bangkok, interviews with Winy Maas, Alfredo Brillemburg and Hubert Klumpner, Lieven De Cauter, Peter Trummer and many others.

The exhibition and publication has been made possible with the generous support of ILJIN, JUT Foundation for Arts and Architecture Taipei, Delft University of Technology, The Why Foundation and the Netherlands Architecture Funds. Total Museum of Contemporary Art (TMCA) is Korea’s first private museum devoted to the art of our time. The TMCA offers various programs of the most thought provoking art in the form of exhibitions, workshops, performances, and lectures. Since its inception, the museum has focused on introducing international contemporary art scenes to Korea and vice versa by inviting many renowned artists like Bernar Venet, Tal Streeter, Bjorn Melhus, Dryden Goodwin, and James Turrell.

MVRDV was set up in Rotterdam (the Netherlands) in 1993 by Winy Maas, Jacob van Rijs and Nathalie de Vries. MVRDV engages globally in providing solutions to contemporary architectural and urban issues. A research based and highly collaborative design method engages experts from all fields, clients and stakeholders in the creative process. The results are exemplary and outspoken buildings, urban plans, studies and objects, which enable our cities and landscapes to develop towards a better future. Early projects such as the headquarters for the Dutch Public Broadcaster VPRO and housing for elderly WoZoCo in Amsterdam lead to international acclaim.

MVRDV develops its work in a conceptual way, the changing condition is visualised and discussed through designs, sometimes literally through the design and construction of a diagram. The office continues to pursue its fascination and methodical research on density using a method of shaping space through complex amounts of data that accompany contemporary building and design processes.

MVRDV first published a cross section of these study results in FARMAX (1998), followed by a.o. MetaCity/Datatown (1999), Costa Iberica (2000), Regionmaker (2002), 5 Minutes City (2003), KM3 (2005), and more recently Spacefighter (2007) and Skycar City (2007). MVRDV deals with global ecological issues in large scale studies such as Pig City as well as in small pragmatic solutions for devastated areas of New Orleans.

Current projects include various housing projects in the Netherlands, Spain, China, France, the United Kingdom, USA, India, Korea and other countries, a bank headquarter in Oslo, Norway, a public library for Spijkenisse , Netherlands, a central market hall for Rotterdam, a culture plaza in Nanjing, China, large scale urban plans include a plan for an eco-city in Logroño, Spain, an urban vision for Oslo or the doubling in size of Almere, Netherlands and Grand Paris, the vision of a post-Kyoto Greater Paris region.

The work of MVRDV is exhibited and published world wide and receives international awards. The 75 architects, designers and staff members conceive projects in a multi-disciplinary collaborative design process and apply highest technological and sustainable standards. Together with Delft University of Technology MVRDV runs The Why Factory, an independent think tank and research institute providing argument for architecture and urbanism by envisioning the city of the future.

More Information > http://www.mvrdv.nl

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