How will we live together?

The 17th International Architecture Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia’s Curator, Hashim Sarkis challenges the exhibitors to imagine new possibilities and in his curatorial statement, elaborates that “We need a new spatial contract. In the context of widening political divides and growing economic inequalities, we call on architects to imagine spaces in which we can generously live together.”

The Hong Kong Institute of Architects Biennale Foundation (HKIABF) and Hong Kong Arts Development Council (HKADC) are collaborating with The Hong Kong Institute of Architects as partner and Create Hong Kong of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region as the lead sponsor, to organize the Hong Kong Collateral Event at the 17th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia.


Our curatorial team has selected “Redistribution: Land, People, and Environment” as the theme for the Hong Kong Collateral Event. The exhibitors are requested to propose innovative ideas on the redistribution of the three critical resources to enhance Hong Kong’s liveabilty. The exhibitors are to propose creative solutions on how we can harmoniously live together by designing caring architecture, constructing people-centric urbanism, and respecting the environment, both built and natural. The curatorial process encourages the exhibitors to work collaboratively in teams – each with members from the status quo/ corporation/ large establishment, young architect/ entrepreneur designer/ artist, and researcher/ academics/ NGO. The required working methodology from such a collaborative process intensifies the exhibitors’ searches and understandings about the meaning of working and living together.


The exhibitors are requested to address various Hong Kong challenges as well as opportunities. The exhibitors will showcase their thoughts on how to utilise the available land resources and its potential redistribution within the Guangzhou-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area network cities to improve liveability, the aging Hong Kong population and possible global talent migration and redistribution to Hong Kong resulting in diversity and Hong Kong’s improved competitiveness, and last but not least, how to make use of technology and take advantage of Hong Kong as a high-density compact vertical city to lead in sustainable development, reduce the city carbon footprint, and redistribute the environmental impact for sustainability and urban wellness. The exhibitors are asked to suggest ways to shape a better future for Hong Kong through a responsible redistribution of critical resources and accountable social institutions.


Since the COVID-19 pandemic, digitalised environments have become prominent alternatives: adopting modern technology while conceptualising ‘our new normal’. As such, the curators embrace this digitalisation and deem it essential in the discourse of “How will we live together”. With the help of augmented reality, the exhibition enables experience sharing through the redistribution of the physical and digitalised environment. It demonstrates Hong Kong’s ability to work globally and its people’s ingenuity of redistributing land, people, and environment for a safer, smarter and more liveable city.


As the redistribution approach requires an analysis of changing points of views, the exhibitors, made up of veteran corporations, young talents and academics/ NGOs are challenged to address their different points of views and produce exhibits showcasing their response and insight on the exhibition redistribution theme. The exhibits will be displayed in Venice from 22 May 2021 to 21 November 2021, with a response exhibition in Hong Kong.