The Korean Pavilion at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia presents The FAR Game: Constraints Sparking Creativity. FAR (Floor Area Ratio) refers to the ratio of a building's total floor area to the size of the piece of land upon which it is built. The FAR Game, curated by Sung Hong Kim and presented by Arts Council Korea, explores the challenges and achievements of contemporary Korean architecture, under these regulatory constraints, and illustrates the struggle of architects in Seoul who strive to improve the residents’ quality of life by utilising space effectively.
Explaining the theme of this year’s Korean Pavilion, Curator Sung Hong Kim stated that “for the past 50 years, maximizing FAR has been the driving force behind the sustainable growth of Korean urban architecture, and remains to be the most challenging task for the majority of architects today”. In the midst of the ongoing tug of war between market demands and government regulations, Korean urban architects are consistently asked to come up with innovative solutions to overcome the constraints and satisfy three parties: landlords (customer) who want to maximize the floor area on the limited piece of land, government (regulator) that restricts and controls the ratios, and developers (supplier) who try to find best solutions to satisfy both sides.
Commissioner: Arts Council Korea (Chair & CEO: Myung Jin Park)
Arts Council Korea (ARKO), commissioner of the Korean Pavilion at Biennale Architettura 2016, is South Korea’s most renowned funding agency that supports access to arts and cultural activities for Korean citizens. Established as The Korean Culture and Arts Foundation in 1973‚ it was later restructured as Arts Council Korea in 2005, made of council members composed of artists to make practice-oriented policies. ARKO has supported diverse arts projects to lay the foundation for the growth of literature, visual arts, and performing arts to achieve its goal of sharing benefits of arts and culture with the public. Furthermore, ARKO has actively reached out and engaged culturally underserved individuals to promote better access to arts and cultural activities with a $200 million project budget in 2016.
Curator: Sung Hong Kim
This year’s curator for the Korean Pavilion at the Biennale Architettura 2016, Sung Hong Kim, is a professor of architecture and urbanism at the University of Seoul. He was a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at the University of Washington in 2006, and served as dean for the Office of Planning and Research Affairs. He was appointed as a co-commissioner for the Korean Pavilion at the 9th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia in 2004, and also organized the Germany-Korea Public Space Forum in 2005. He curated the exhibition of Megacity Network: Contemporary Korean Architecture held in Frankfurt, Berlin, Tallinn, Barcelona, and Seoul for three years from 2007 to 2010. Kim published numerous books about cities and architecture, such as Megacity Network: Contemporary Korean Architecture (2007), Creative Imagination about Urban Architecture (2009), and Architecture around the Corner of Streets (2011).
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