Dinko Peračić

we need it – we do it

Croatian Pavilion at the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale

with Miranda Veljačić, Emina Višnić, Slaven Tolj

We need contemporary culture and art, places of critical sociability and we need spaces adapted for their development. We do not wait for ideal conditions, we realize them. We begin to use abandoned spaces, we adapt them and use them at the same time, the content is developed together with the architecture serving it. Architecture ceases to be just a framework for the social events and becomes one of protagonists.

The setting that unites three cultural scenes, in three old buildings, in three Croatian cities (Rijeka, Zagreb, Split) into one new place is constructed in one of the rooms of the Venetian Arsenal. At the same time, it is a mini-museum that maps history of exploitation of these buildings, infrastructure that gathers in itself contemporary events, current artists and visions of these spaces and contents in times to come. Art scene is in one room, containing works from squatters and punkers to well-known artists. Artists that participate in it with their new works do not consider it as a model of some distant buildings, but as a concrete equally real space, because of interactions and all necessary cultural meaning that are created within it. Some consider it a stage of this specific national scene. Some fear it is a catacomb in which the scene has withdrawn due to current social circumstances.

Three room walls are formed by cross-sections of the Youth Centre in Split, Pogon Jedinstvo in Zagreb and the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Rijeka. The cross-sections consist of shallow niches, each representing a concrete space, whether existing or designed, with program that either happened or is planned to happen. The Venice Exhibiton is a  concentrate of living processes and another way in which architecture can stimulate their development.