An exhibition, research residency and conference series curated by Joseph Grima and Space Caviar
V–A–C Zattere, Venice
March 2021 – January 2022
Non-Extractive Architecture will transform Palazzo delle Zattere into a live research platform focused on rethinking the balance between the built and natural environments, the role of technology and politics in future material economies, and the responsibility of the architect as an agent of transformation.
The project sets out to examine — and redefine — the public’s expectations of the architect and architects’ expectations of themselves. What if architecture were understood first and foremost as a form of husbandry of the built and natural environments? What if we redesigned our economies to favour integration, circularity durability and social resilience through the towns and cities we build? What if the material supply chains behind environments we inhabit were visible and participatory rather than invisible and often exploitative? Non-Extractive Architecture will engage individuals within and outside the field of architecture to create an open platform through which the current role of architecture can be debated, and new paths can be defined to leverage its potential as a positive force in shaping the future of the landscape.
Space Caviar is an architecture and research studio operating at the intersection of design, technology, politics and the public realm. Founded in 2013 by Joseph Grima and Tamar Shafrir, the office uses built work, exhibitions, publishing, writing and film to investigate and document contemporary modes of habitation and the spatialisation of social and political practice.
Space Caviar’s work has been shown at the Venice Architecture Biennale, the Victoria and Albert Museum, Biennale Interieur, Vitra Design Museum and Nilufar Gallery, among others.
The public programme brings together designers, material specialists, economists and theorists all working on the themes of Non-Extractive Architecture. This programming aims to activate the palazzo, online platform and workshop space through a broadcasting station and publishing initiative.
Sign up to receive the Non-Extractive Architecture newsletter here
The blog shares the events, research, conversations and ongoing activity of the residency programme at V-A-C Zattere. Follow for updates from our ten residents as the year-long exhibition expands and grows.
The software developed by F451 (Domitille Debret and Quentin Creuzet) automates the translation of the research conducted in Palazzo delle Zattere into exhibition form, constructing in the process a vocabulary around the concept of non-extractive architecture. The content developed by the research team will be organised and rendered visually by this software, and then printed and hung on the walls of V-A-C Zattere throughout the course of the project.
An online archive will collect the expanding and ongoing research produced as part of Non-Extractive Architecture: On Designing without Depletion. As the research fills the walls of Palazzo delle Zattere with content, an online archive of this work will grow in parallel. We invite you to join us by contributing to this growing archive of references, case studies, materials and landscapes towards defining non-extractive architecture. The exhibition is intended to be downloadable, printed and widely accessible.
Non-Extractive Architecture: On Designing without Depletion Vol.1
This illustrated reference handbook sets out to find a new approach to architecture, one based on long-term thinking, material resources and their subsequent landscapes, and the integration of community values into the construction industry. Through a series of essays by architects, geographers, historians, economists, urbanists, and philosophers, Non-Extractive Architecture: On Designing without Depletion Vol.1 explores whether an alternative paradigm in design is possible, and what values it might be founded on.
Edited by Space Caviar with an introduction by Joseph Grima and contributions by Dele Adeyemo, Benjamin Bratton, Stephanie Carlisle, Emanuele Coccia, Keller Easterling, Swarnabh Ghosh, Macarena Gómez-Barris, Phineas Harper, Elsa Hoover, Jane Hutton, Interiors Agency, Elisa Iturbe, Luke Jones, Chiara Di Leone, Armin Linke, Charlotte Malterre-Barthes, Nicholas Pevzner, Maria Smith and Mark Wigley.
Published by V–A–C and Sternberg Press. 2021
You can buy the book here