Facing Gaia

Venice, Italy


Facing Gaia is presented in conjunction with the exhibition “Time Space Existence” at the Venice Architectural Biennale.  The tower is located in the Giardini della Marinaressa, a public park adjacent to the entrance of the Giardini of Biennale  Reminiscent of ancient forms while employing advanced materials, the project explores the continuum of time, space and existence through the relationship between the planet and humanity.

Standing at 12-meters-tall at the edge of the Adriatic Sea, the gleaming white, monolithic tower is bisected by a floating amorphous void.  The undulating mirror-finished space in between represents the infinite and the finite, the possible and the impossible, while reflecting the surrounding gardens, water and pedestrians.

The title is derived from the concept that Gaia (the living Earth) is at a moment of crisis.  Humanity is at a crossroads in a world where we are running out of resources and space – in a moment where we are expanding with progressive technologies and the increasing capacity to connect.  We are moving into a cultural shift from sustainability to viability.  Facing Gaia stands as a beacon on the edge of this precipice.

The Studio collaborated with GRIP Metal to fabricate the tower employing future methods of construction.  The facade was created using GRIP Metal Technology and was prefabricated in Toronto, Canada.  The interior void was created with 3D printing technology and received its final finish in Venice with local craftsmen.