AUTHOR: Sascha Roesler
CONTEXT: Research and Exhibition Concept for the British Pavilion at the 14th Venice Architecture Biennale 2014
Historically, Tropical Architecture is a modern knowledge produced under colonial conditions. This knowledge can be described as an attempt to regulate the tropical climate through design and building solutions. How can we deconstruct the colonial heritage of Tropical Architecture whilst at the same time harnessing its sophisticated technical and cultural achievements for contemporary globalised architecture? Today’s challenge lies in the transformation of the historical concept of Tropical Architecture into a contemporary theory of construction. Tropical Architecture has to be understood both as a historical and a timeless concept (one which urgently needs updating). From these twin perspectives, the British pavilion will look to both the British colonial past of the 20th century, and to contemporary global endeavours towards sustainability in architecture and construction. Tropical Architecture will be understood as a forerunner to green and sustainable architectural strategies (with, indeed, a lot of ambiguities to be discovered).