“Common Ground” Vernissage at the 2012 la Biennale di Venezia di Architettura (update)

Well, that special day has finally arrived!  Happy Biennale, everyone!  I will keep you posted as more pictures becomes available!  For now, enjoy some of these images, a work-in-progress of the exhibition with that iconic red, and images of Pierre Cardin’s press conference about Palais Lumiere; the sky scraper project next to our site. (Images courtesy of Luigi Croce of the Venice Architectural Association)



The Venice Biennale (known locally as la Biennale di Venezia)  is a major contemporary art exhibition that takes place once every two years (in odd years) in Venice, Italy. The Venice Film Festival is part of it. So too is the Venice Biennale of Architecture, which is held in even years. A dance section, the “International Festival of Contemporary Dance”, was established in 1999.

la Biennale di Venezia di Architettura

la Biennale di Venezia di Architettura (Vernissage)

symTEC:  Selected tower design proposal for the Marghera waterfront in the industrial zone of Mestre, under the sponsorship of the Venice Architectural Association at the Instituto Universitario di Architecttura di Venezia’s (IUAV) “Tall on the Water” International Competition.

Opening Reception Honored Guests: President of the Italian Republic: Hon. Giorgio Napolitano, and French fashion designer Pierre Cardin (who previously had plans of having a tower erected in Mestre)

Special Thanks to: IUAV Resident and Visiting Professors: Luigi CroceDario TrabuccoPhilip Oldfield, PhD., and Sal Raffone (SOM-NYC); symTEC group: Gianluca Comandini, Andrea Boatti and Chen Man 

August 29-November 25, 2012; Opening Reception: August 26, 2012; Venice, Italy

*will update as more information becomes available

Confession: I’m a foodie!

When it comes to travelling, there’s always one thing I am so excited about, and it’s not the famed landmarks of the place, but the FOOD!!!  To me, trying the local and bizarre cuisine is the best way to experience the culture, and usually comes with it are new people you get to meet!  And you don’t have to splurge to taste the best of the best… Because often times, people are led to believe that if it’s expensive, then it’s good… I would say this is not true in Europe… you really have to find the local places!  Although, last year, my friends and I did splurge a bit on the 9th best restaurant in the world in Paris (according to Acqua Panna and San Pelligrino) at Le Chateaubriand, although they did fall behind their rankings as of this year and are on number 15…

Anyway… since I only spent a layover in Paris, I did eat much, but for some escargots, foie gras and macarons, which I had to get from La Durée… When it comes to Parisian macarons, there’s only 2 places to go… Pierre Hermé and La Durée… sure, you can settle for one at a nearby pâtisserie… but its’ not the same… it’s not artfully done… long story short… choose one of these two Parisian Pâtisseries…

So Venice is very different, in comparison to other Italian cities, because of its location, being by the water… It’s not like Rome, or Florence, or Naples… so logically, the food is also different… lots of fresh sea food!

Day 1-3 in Venezia!!! Ciao!

I am so sorry for not keeping updated with my travel blog (if ever I have any readers out there… probably my family… I used to blog a lot before, in highschool… so trying to pick up back on it, especially with this international workshop and competition)

So as most of you know I was selected to do a skyscraper design in a workshop and competition here at the Venice Architectural Association here in the Universitá IUAV di Venezia, which is the top architecture school in all of Italy; most known for their connection with the Venice Biennale!  The event is, of course sponsored by SOM, Honeywell, Permasteelisa (Façade) Group and many more… I can’t remember off the top of my head…  It’s now day 3 into the competition, but before I got into detail of what has happened today… will update you on what has happened since I landed in Paris…

So, I landed in Paris, the day after the city’s Pride event, but the city was still festive with the un-cleaned rainbow-colored decorations… I only spent 5 hours in the city, taking the RER from CDG to Gare du Nord, switching onto the 4-Metro and getting off at Gare de L’est, where I dropped by the Recollets, where I lived last summer in Paris… From Gare de L’est I took the 7-Metro to the Palais Royal to visit the Da Vinci’s in the Louvre… luckily the line were short that day and was able to get in the museum in less than 20 minutes! I, of course, had only one intention… to actually enjoy the works without documenting it—just admiring the works… So I only visited the right wing (Denon)… Of course, La Joconde was crowded as usual, there were at least 14 other Da Vinci’s in the Louvre, many are unknown to the tourists… Three or four were just outside the hall of where the La Joconde was…  My favorite work by Da Vinci is actual the La Belle Ferroniere…  Mainly because of the controversy surrounding it, that she was not actually painted by Da Vinci… for many reasons.  Many believed that her mysteriously missing hands is an indication that she was not a work of the master, also her hair seems to be unfinished… lacking the detail in chiaroscuro and sfumato that Da Vinci is known for… But many do believe that she was done by the great master because of the detail of the fabric of her clothes… anyway, do not want to bore you with any more art stuff, as I have probably have already… After an hour in the Louvre, I walked down Rue de Rivoli going down towards the Notre Dame, and having lunch around the neighborhood (I had canard di confit and of course foie gras)… back to the Pont Archeveche to look for the love-lock that I left on the bridge… but I really can’t find it… and I didn’t want to spend all the time looking for it, as I had a limited time in Paris… Went back up north to the Beaubourg neighborhood to see my previous professor’s work that’s currently under exhibition in the Pompidou! It was amazing!!!  I was proud to have taken 2 classes with him, and wished I was able to have taken more…

After the Pompidou, decided that my little day trip in Paris was over, so I headed back to the airport, after stopping by Ladurée… YUM!!! This time, I took pictures =)  It was close to 7PM when I got back to CDG, and waited for 2 hours for my connecting flight to Venezia!

(… will update it more later, when I have wi-fi)

Je suis á Paris!

So I’ve arrived in Paris… Going to the Louvre for a quick visit, then Pompidou… Lastly Notre Dame… Doing it Situationist style though… So I refuse to take any pictures, but actually take in the experience and not make a Spectacle of it… Will explain more later, as I am only using my phone to blog… Au revoir for now…

PS… Although, blogging about it seems like I’m making a Spectacle of the event…

First stop: Paris!

Returning to Paris after a year… going to visit the lovelock I left in Pont de l’Archevêché, just behind Notre Dame… and Andrew Kudless‘ installation that’s currently being exhibited at the Centre Pompidou!  And of course, will indulge myself in food!