The XXII International Exhibition at La Triennale in Milan called “Broken Nature: Design Takes on Human Survival” opens on March 1 and runs until September 1, 2019. The International exhibition is an in-depth exploration of the factors that connect humans to the natural environment that have been intensely compromised underlining the concept of restorative design, highlighting objects and concepts at all scales that reconsider human beings’ relationship with their environments — including both natural and social ecosystems.
Broken Nature is curated by Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator of Architecture & Design, Director of Research & Development at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. She says “Broken Nature invites a deeper understanding of the complex and interconnected, multi-species systems we inhabit. It facilitates a perception of long time, beyond the lifespan of a few generations; and it offers visitors a clear idea of practical steps that can be taken toward a restorative attitude. The XXII Triennale di Milano celebrates the revolutionary power of imagination and ingenuity.”
Broken Nature consists of a thematic exhibition, the contributions of 22 international participants, invited through official government channels under the auspices of the Bureau International des Expositions, an installation called The Great Animal Orchestra, created by Bernie Krause and United Visual Artists on the initiative of the Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, and a special exhibition entitled The Nation of Plants, curated by Stefano Mancuso.
The thematic exhibition consists of four works specially commissioned from international designers. The commissioned works have been entrusted to Formafantasma (Andrea Trimarchi and Simone Farresin); to Neri Oxman and her research group, the Mediated Matter Group of MIT Media Lab; to Sigil (Khaled Malas, Salim Al-Kadi, Alfred Tarazi, and Jana Traboulsi), a collective based in Beirut and New York; and to Accurat, a data-driven research, design, and innovation studio based in Milan and New York (project led by Giorgia Lupi and Gabriele Rossi.) These commissions highlight design approaches aimed not only at correcting humanity’s self-destructive course, but also at replenishing our relationship with the environment and with all species—including other human beings. Some are even continuations of a body of work previously started and are meant to encourage the designers to consider their practice as long-term research.
In addition to the commissioned works, the thematic exhibition comprises a selection of circa 100 projects from the last three decades, examples of restorative design, architecture, and art from all over the world. Among them, Broken Nature includes new installations and objects—like Paola Bay and Armando Bruno’s Reliquaries, Dominique Chen’s Nuka-doko, and Google Brain’s Whale Song—and milestones such as Pettie Petzer and Johan Jonker’s Hippo Roller, Elemental’s Quinta Monroy housing, Martino Gamper’s 100 Chairs in 100 Days, and Zach Lieberman et al.’s Eyewriter, a low-cost, open source eye-tracking system. These projects, which have played an essential role in the history and advancement of design, have had, in some cases, a memorable impact on society and in the way humans related to the world around them. By placing these different projects in the same space and within the same conversation, the exhibition aims to unearth design’s potential to mediate societal and behavioral changes.
Other 22 international participations, promoted by institutions and universities of international excellence, as well as by governmental entities accompany the thematic exhibition. International participants offer a highly diverse range of themes, perspectives, contexts, and origins, illustrating the complexity and diversity of cultural traditions. Moreover, with an exhibition entitled Milano 2030, a pavilion for the city of Milan is inaugurating the new Urban Center headquartered at the Palazzo dell’Arte.
Broken Nature also consists of an extensive calendar of public programming and symposia, and an online platform for dynamic public discourse.
XXII Triennale di Milano, viale Alemagna 6 20121 Milan
Broken Nature: Design Takes on Human Survival
March 1 – September 1, 2019