The Official Portuguese Representation at the 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia 2023 presents Fertile Futures, a project curated by Andreia Garcia and deputy curators Ana Neiva and Diogo Aguiar, which focuses on the problems of water resources in seven Portuguese hydrogeographies, to stimulate thought about a fertile, sustainable and equitable future. Commissioned by the Directorate-General for the Arts, the exhibition Fertile Futures will be presented between May 20 and November 26 2023, at Palazzo Franchetti, in Venice.
Focusing on seven distinct hydrogeographies, Fertile Futures commissions young architects, in collaboration with experts from other areas of knowledge, to present propositional models for a more sustainable tomorrow, in non-hierarchical cooperation between disciplines, generations, and species.
The seven case studies exemplify the anthropocentric action on finite natural water resources, namely: in the Tâmega Basin; in the International Douro; in Middle Tejo; in the Alqueva Reservoir; in the Mira River; in Lagoa das Sete Cidades; and in Madeira's Streams. These installations are summaries of months of on-site research, workshops and talks made along side with experts from various disciplines and local communities alike. They present a set of guidelines for a fairer, inclusive, more equitable future with water as a fundamental element.
Fertile Futures invited ten consultants to nurture the dialogue and simultaneously be part of different debate moments open to the public.
Margarida Waco is an architect whose practice straddles architectural design, research, teaching, curating, and publishing. She is an Associate Lecturer at the Royal College of Art, directing the Architectural Design Studio 8: Anatomies of Ecological Bodies and is an Editorial Advisor to The Funambulist. She is part of the advisors team of Fertile Futures.
Luca Astorri is part of the advisors team of Fertile Futures. He is an architect, founder of AOUMM and since 2017, he is co-director and founder of In Loco, a training program for development projects by the ONG Rise International in Lesotho.
Pedro Gadanho is part of the advisor’s team of Fertile Futures. He is an architect, curator and writer. A 2020 Loeb Fellow from Harvard University, launched in 2022 the book Climax Change!, where he presents an analysis of the impact of the current environmental crisis on architectural practices.
Francisco Ferreira is part of the advisors team of Fertile Futures. He is Associate Professor of NOVA University Lisbon and a researcher at CENSE. Currently he is the President of ZERO–Associação Sistema Terrestre Sustentável, a national environmental non-governmental organisation.
Ana Tostões is part of the advisors team of Fertile Futures. She is an architect, architecture critic and historian. She is Full Professor at Instituto Superior Técnico – University of Lisbon and coordinator of the research group on architecture of CiTUA.
Andres Lepik is part of the advisors team of Fertile Futures. He was Loeb-Fellow at the Graduate School of Design in Harvard University and in 2012 he became Professor for Architecture History and Curatorial Practice. Currently is the Director of the Architecture Museum of Technische Universität Munich.