On Italian museography, but refrained to the site of BBPR’s Castello Sforzesco. Expressed via the means of Hans Hollein's inspired axonometries and Giotto-styled renderings with the attributes of various scale models. The whole is held togetter within the maze of a small scale private chapel.
Koenraad Dedobbeleer
Antonios Prokos
David Viladomiu
Lerna Bagdjian
Eric Bonhôte
Lois Bouche
Svenja Clausen
Noé Cuendet
Vincent Dorfmann
Florent Dubois
Floriane Fol
Fanny Frykberg Wallin
Alexandra Fuchs
Eva Hürlimann
Valentine Jaques
Valdrin Jashari
Daniela Lopes Peñaloza
Nina Mosca
Marion Moutal
Philippine Radat
Germán Ribera Marín
Valentine Robin
Felix Spangenberg
Constance Steinfels
Annabelle Thüring

An exhibition of the program Italians Did It Better by Koenraad Dedobbeleer at EPFL Studio Master I organised with Silicon IVIalley

Silicon IVIalley
Prilly, Switzerland

The ambition to explore the possible contrasts and interactions between serious architectural practice and contemporary art drives the energies converged during the exhibition On Italian Museography… This project bridges an EPFL research unit directed by Koenraad Dedobbeleer (a prototypal architectural firm) named Italians did it better, with an artist-run space, Silicon Malley, overseen by a group of artists in Lausanne. The outcome is a multi-layered exploration and amalgamation of two distinct reflective spaces.

Contemporary artists, due to the proliferation of ‘artist-run-spaces’ and the surge of small international galleries, have grown accustomed to working outside deliberately-designed architectural contexts, such as museums, foundations, art centers, and other institutional settings. Only the elite of this corporate ensemble have the opportunity to engage spatially with the architectures of their era. Architecture, in contrast, is most often showcased in exhibition contexts in a format that leans more towards a presentation rather than an exhibition itself. The collective aspiration to present this architectural exhibition in a space almost devoid of any architectural concept reconnects with a pragmatic democratisation of contemporary interrelations between art and architecture. The curation of this exhibition by Koenraad Dedobbeleer, an artist whose theoretical endeavours constantly oscillate between these two cultural spheres, facilitates a gentle and balanced discursive exchange, respecting the diverse cultures represented. Like its underlying structure or script, it unveils its intentions through a nested series reminiscent of Russian dolls, enabling a kaleidoscopic concentration on the academic study of the exhibition’s architectural devices. The bibliography established during the project’s development delves into these exhibition systems still largely uncharted history.

The self-titled exhibition of Herzog and de Meuron at the Centre Pompidou in 1995, co-curated by Remy Zaugg, stands as the manifest theoretical legacy of On Italian Museography… Orchestrated by an artist and his two assistant architects, Antonios Prokos and David Viladomiu, it stems from a synergy that elicits a focused, scholarly, and open investigation – specifically, an analysis and reinterpretation by Master of Architecture students regarding museum layouts created by a group of Italian architects between the 1950s and 1970s. The focal point narrows further, centring on BBPR’s iconic Castello Sforzesco (1954–1956), a hallmark of this architectural corpus. Detailed and succinct, the design of the museum’s internal spaces amalgamates the quintessential elements of these canonical presentations of European cultural legacy – in this case, a collection predominantly comprised of works from the Quattrocento, representing Italian history and the Flemish Renaissance.

This research manifests as a studiolo, a recursive representation of the exhibition space, resembling an inverted cabinet which, for each of its openings, offers a perspective, an axonometry, and a model, each corresponding to a student’s project. The inner appearance of this furniture, evoking a chapel, is adorned with a sequential display of renderings inspired by Giotto’s frescoes in the Arena Church of Padua (1303–1306). This nod to the work of the artist, regarded as the progenitor of perspective in painting, forges an evident connection between artistic and architectural subjectivity. It also visually imprints a fascination akin to the order of the orthodox icon towards the classical art museum within a contemporary presentation setting, opposing any grandeur or splendour. This yet-to-be-resolved contradiction, a query directed at the observer and the visitor, frames the present-day interplays between student or professional and artistic or architectural practices, which we are tasked to invigorate.

Arthur Fouray


Exhibition Making
Arthur Fouray
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Curriculum vitæ

Many thanks for reading.

Special thanks to Béatrice & Alain Fouray.

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