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Interrobang picked to curate Oslo Architecture Triennale

Oat teamshot crop
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A team including young trans-disciplinary firm Interrobang will curate the 2019 Oslo Architecture Triennale (OAT), the seventh edition of the festival

The curatorial team comprises architect and Interrobang founder Maria Smith and associate Matthew Dalziel, as well as critic and deputy director of The Architecture Foundation Phineas Harper and Norwegian researcher, lecturer and artist Cecilie Sachs Olsen. 

Their proposal, Common Futures, was selected from 71 submissions, and will investigate the ‘potential architecture of degrowth’.  

Smith said: ‘We are thrilled! This is a critical opportunity to examine architecture’s role in responding to and catalysing transformative economies and communities. It is going to be an intense and important two years.’ 

The jury of Nina Berre, Anne Beate Hovind, Pedro Gadanho, Marianne Skjulhaug and Kjetil Trædal Thorsen said the team had the ‘potential to question the general relevance and logic of architecture biennials and triennials in the world’. 

It added: ‘The proposal addresses a tendency which has been on the rise in the last decade. Degrowth is gaining ground in social and economic contexts, and it is time for architectural practice and discourse to position itself and consider the possible consequences for the profession.  

‘With this concept, the Triennale could be a platform to establish an understanding of a potential architecture of degrowth: defining it, questioning it and challenging both architects, architecture commissioners and decision makers to develop new strategies for building, planning, evolving and adapting our built environments based on non‐growth development.’ 

The jury also thought the proposal could be read as a challenge to Oslo, ‘to open itself up to the ideas and ideals of alternative ways of development and to explore its potential ramifications in what may be seen as a collective pursuit towards a more climate-conscious urban and global future’. 

Interrobang, which was founded in 2015 within Webb Yates Engineers, was the only primarily UK-based team on the five-strong shortlist, announced last month, and the only one to include a practising architecture firm.

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