Biennale Architettura 2016 - National Participation of Chile

Against the Tide speaks of a contrary direction that things can take. This exhibition moves against the tide of those urban battles—perhaps more global in scope—waged to improve the quality of our built environment. It puts the accent rather on the customs and landscapes of the rural world, a world of fields and forests, helping through architecture to improve the everyday quality of life of its people.

AGAINST THE TIDEChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

AGAINST THE TIDEChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

AGAINST THE TIDEChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

Against the Tide presents the efforts of a generation of young architects who have conceived, designed, and constructed works of architecture, while also handling financing and contracting for them, in order to earn their professional certification. All they have in common is that they belong to the Central Valley of Chile, where they have returned following their academic training to contribute to their communities, creating architectures which trace a filigree of places where the region’s campesinos and their families can live and work.

AGAINST THE TIDEChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

SUSPENDED TABLEChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

THE CURTAINChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

PENTAGONChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

These architectures have been erected with minimal resources, with the residues of agricultural processes and with readily available local materials, contributing value and inserting the territory into a global context through a regional—but not a costumbrista—approach. Out of this rural landscape and environment, in constant transformation due to agricultural activity and urban development, there emerges a series of pavilions, rest stops, miradors, lunch shelters, and plazas, or simply places for shade and social encounter, ephemeral or permanent, explicit of abstract.

LANDSCAPESChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

Against the tide speaks of doing things in the silence of the countryside, far from the bustle of official life. It speaks of wandering from the path, in order to discover the voids that public policy has left by the wayside, and so to piece together a united front against forgetfulness. Thus, against the tide, a group of small architectures has been created, scattered amidst the folds of Chile’s Central Valley and tracing a filigree of places in which the campesinos and their families can find a place to live, overlooking the landscape.

LANDSCAPESChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

LANDSCAPESChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

LANDSCAPESChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

The works are highway stops, miradors, lunch shelters. They are practical or dreamy, ephemeral or permanent, explicit or abstract. They are built of the remains of various processes having to do with agriculture (mesh, slats, containers, pallets) or with forestry (branches, discarded timber). All this material, when placed in the hands of the architect, generates a frequently original constructive system aimed at making a place for these campesinos who may well be the architects’ grandparents and who once, when they were young, also built with what they found in the territory.

LANDSCAPESChile - Biennale Architettura 2016

SEASIDE SHELTER by Author: Daniel PrietoChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The fishermen’s union in the locality of Putú at lunchtime usually takes shelter under ramadas. Once the working day is over, the shelter is moved, like a campsite, to the next fishing site. It was from this itinerant activity that the idea emerged of a construction that would resemble these precarious structures, reflecting the close ties they have with the inhabitants of the Central Valley. Notions of tensegrity and arte povera are also incorporated, helping to integrate the structure delicately into the territory and highlighting the fragile relationship of human beings with their surroundings. Author: Daniel Prieto

SEASIDE SHELTER, Author: Daniel Prieto, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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TRADITIONAL RURAL RACETRACK PAVILION by Author: Claudio CastilloChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project is constituting a public cultural support for the community, intended to help to configure an identity for the locality, and acting as a cultural magnet associated with the territory, its history, and its particular ways of life. Associated with the traditional horseraces of rural Chile, the pavilion helps to configure the image of a landscape, a community, and a country in function of its traditions, renewing and integrating a civic sector of the village, promoting rural tourism, and contributing to the sustenance of the community, which sees its roots reflected in this traditional activity. Author: Claudio Castillo

TRADITIONAL RURAL RACETRACK PAVILION, Author: Claudio Castillo, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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STORAGE AREA AND LUNCH SHELTER FOR RASPBERRY FIELDS by Author: Ximena CéspedesChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


This work consists of a structure for temporarily storing picked fruit and providing shelter to the extra seasonal workers employed during the harvest. The washable wall surfaces are of concrete and drywall and the roof of PVC, attached to a light, dismountable structure that makes for a cool, ventilated space, ideal for storing fruit and providing a comfortable rest space for the seasonal workers. Located where it is, the structure serves as a reference point both in the fields and as part of the landscape, making it possible to gauge sizes and distances. Author: Ximena Céspedes

STORAGE AREA AND LUNCH SHELTER FOR RASPBERRY FIELDS, Author: Ximena Céspedes, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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TRASH DEPOSIT STOP by Author: César VerdugoChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project is located in one of the most polluted places in the locality of Armerillo. Because of its remoteness and the easy access to the canal, people use this place as a garbage dump. The work is situated in at an intermediate point between the cordillera and the canal, creating a nexus by means of the arrangement of a series of rigid elements, framed by recognizable local landmarks. Thus, the experience of the users can include several distinct moments: they can deposit their trash, wash their hands, and pause to enjoy the surrounding landscape before continuing on their journey. Author: César Verdugo

TRASH DEPOSIT STOP, Author: César Verdugo, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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PLATFORM AND RURAL FURNISHINGS by Author: Juan Francisco InostrozaChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project is located in a part of Piedras Blancas which residents have to get to on bicycle in order then to take transportation to their final destinations. They need to leave their bicycles chained to trees before continuing their journeys. The work takes into account the particular circumstances of living and building in an agricultural zone, a rural landscape and vernacular constructions and materials.The works consists of a platform, a place where bicycles can be parked, and a roof. This place of passage responds to a basic need of the rural context in which it is inserted. Author: Juan Francisco Inostroza

PLATFORM AND RURAL FURNISHINGS, Author: Juan Francisco Inostroza, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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SALINEAS: A PLACE FOR HISTORY by Author: Felipe ArandaChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


Lo Valdivia is a locality that depends on sea water. It is a salt-producing enclave territory halfway between land and sea. The project seeks to leave a trace on the territory with a height that can be determined from afar. The challenge is to preserve the levelness of the site, the white tones, the height, and the territorial context to become a new part of the history. This is preserved by one hundred photographs placed inside the hoses with concepts such as territory, inhabitant, industrial activity, material, and landscape, providing matter to ensure that the memories are not forgotten. Author: Felipe Aranda

SALINEAS: A PLACE FOR HISTORY, Author: Felipe Aranda, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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MIRADOR LUNCH SHELTER by Author: Javier RodríguezChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project is located on the northern bank of the Lontué River. It is to function as a lunch room for seasonal workers engaged in pruning, picking, and harvesting. A fundamental premise of the project was to provide sufficient shelter to allow for some privacy and a restful place to eat. Familiar elements from the region were used as architectural solutions: stones taken from the river, wood from disposal bins, eucalyptus branches, mesh, and tensioned wire. The objective was a balance between the provisional nature and the visual command of the landscape. Author: Javier Rodríguez

MIRADOR LUNCH SHELTER, Author: Javier Rodríguez, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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REMAINS FACING THE HORIZON by Author: Felipe MuñozChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The beach at Pelluhue, mainly accessed by road, is surrounding by a rough and rocky topography. The pavilion salvages and reuses wood thrown up by the tsunami to create a densely structured landmark recognizable within the landscape. A horizontal volume, sectioned within for optimal habitability, rests on a rocky base platform, open to the ocean and framing the horizon. With its tranquil horizontal placement within the landscape, it creates a transition between mountain and sea. Author: Felipe Muñoz

REMAINS FACING THE HORIZON, Author: Felipe Muñoz, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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WINDOWS OVERLOOKING THE LANDSCAPE by Author: Tanya VeraChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


Located in Malloa, this project consists of a group of two interrelated mirador- shelters overlooking the surrounding landscape. The two volumes, each one constructed of concrete slabs and walls of baled straw, rest on a pair of terrace platforms. The roofs are of vegetal fibers which provide shade and frame views of the surroundings. Inserted gently into its site, with the incline assumed as an element in the design, the work looks out onto the landscape, incorporating its surroundings and offering the user an unhurried view of the rural context. Author: Tanya Vera

WINDOWS OVERLOOKING THE LANDSCAPE, Author: Tanya Vera, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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RURAL PLATFORMS by Author: Gabriel GarridoChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project is inserted into a rural community consisting of a number of houses groups around a small common area, totally lacking in public infrastructure. The new element defines a public space that both integrates residents and gathers in elements from the rural periphery. The elevated platform, made of wood recycled from pallets collected in the area, serves as a support for neighborhood activities. A clay oven is incorporated as a catalyst for social interaction. Finally, the roof, made of three layers of tensioned Raschell mesh, provides shade and lends a sense of density to the place. Author: Gabriel Garrido

RURAL PLATFORMS, Author: Gabriel Garrido, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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AGUA SANTA CEREMONIAL PLAZA by Author: Ximena CáceresChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The design draws on a geometry that evokes the sacred, transforming a barren summit into a landmark and a social encounter space. It is oriented by means of three movements: by clearing and organizing an ascending promenade; by constructing and controlling a circular envelope; and by installing a stairway that runs through the interior in a single line. The circular structure consists of a series of wooden piles arranged in crossing diagonals to form two parallel circular planes. This structure supports a metallic grille filled in with hawthorn branches gathered from the clearing of the uphill promenade. Author: Ximena Cáceres

AGUA SANTA CEREMONIAL PLAZA, Author: Ximena Cáceres, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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PALLET PLAZA by Author: Jonnattan SilvaChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The plaza is located along a public avenue in Villa San Sebastián: an urban border dialoguing with a rural landscape. The project was designed to salvage something of what it had signified and to restore life to what might have been a patio in the shade of a tree. Wooden pallets made for a low-cost, easily-handled repetitive structural element. By grouping the pallets in vertical position an efficient constructive system was achieved, capable of defining a self-supporting volume, which makes it possible to enjoy views of the valley, feeling the breezes and listening to the leaves under the shade of a tree. Author: Jonnattan Silva

PALLET PLAZA, Author: Jonnattan Silva, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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PRODUCTION SUPPORT IN ÑIQUÉN by Author: Yasna MonsalveChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


Two incomplete cubes, placed face to face, which configure a space for work and for storing the results of production. The first cube is of metal, offering protection from rain and sunlight, while the second is of roughhewn wood, with an exterior shell that blends into the surroundings and can be easily repaired. The language established by the materials and technologies is accessible and commonly understood. The building opens up to the landscape and suggests a ventilated space, but at the same time the constructed body embraces the vegetal dynamism of its surroundings. Author: Yasna Monsalve

PRODUCTION SUPPORT IN ÑIQUÉN, Author: Yasna Monsalve, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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WATER PATHWAYS by Author: Carolina GuerraChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project is an intervention into a water tank of the Pencahue cemetery, which is transformed into a community meeting place and a landmark. Construction is based on oak slats, attached to a steel structure, inside and outside of the steel rings, lending it both depth from a distance and greater visual permeability from close up. The underlying platform consists of the same oak slats laid edgewise, guiding visitors to the points where water can be accessed, it makes for efficient drainage and will prevent the muddy areas, facilitating circulation and making it more pleasant and convenient to users. Author: Carolina Guerra

WATER PATHWAYS, Author: Carolina Guerra, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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SHADE SHELTER AT TRADITIONAL RURAL RACETRACK by Author: Carolina SolísChile - Biennale Architettura 2016


The project calls for a shade shelter from which to watch the traditional horseraces organized occasionally as part of the local rural fiestas. The construction consists of a light, fragile, sinuous, and highly permeable covering, which allows light to filter through even as it provides shade and protection from the rain. The covering rests on a structure of wooden pillars and beams. The design experiments with plywood as a basic construction unit. Owing to its dimensions and greater porosity, plywood allows for better control of the climatic conditions—sunlight, wind, rain—to which the sheets of wood are subjected. Author: Carolina Solís

SHADE SHELTER AT TRADITIONAL RURAL RACETRACK, Author: Carolina Solís, From the collection of: Chile - Biennale Architettura 2016
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Credits: Story

Curators: Juan Román, José Luis Uribe
Commissioner: Cristóbal Molina (National Council of Culture and the Arts of Chile)
Exhibitors: Felipe Aranda, Ximena Cáceres, Claudio Castillo, Ximena Céspedes, Gabriel Garrido, Carolina Guerra, Juan Francisco Inostroza, Yasna Monsalve, Felipe Muñoz, Daniel Prieto, Javier Rodríguez, Jonnattan Silva, Carolina Solís, Tanya Vera, Cesar Verdugo
Pavilion Design: Juan Roman
Academic consultants: Eduardo Aguirre, Kenneth Gleiser, Andrés Maragaño, Susana Sepulveda, White Zúñiga
Design and construction of the wooden bench : Germán Valenzuela
Design and construction of the curtain: Felipe Miño + Architecture Student Workshop I, University of Talca, 2016
Design of the suspended table: Diego Espinoza
Drawings: Alonso Castillo, Edgar Torres
Models: Letelier Victor Hugo Bravo, Constanza Gonzalez, Giselle Salinas, Carolina Mejias, Francisca Tejos, Nicole Riveros, Lino Molina, Lidicet Mellado, Solange Gaete, Cristian Quezada
Web: Marcela Godoy, Nika Zufic Gradisek
Contributors: Antonio Arevalo, Kevin Fuentes, Gloria Herrera, Matias Jauregui, Felipe Quezada, Francisco Lara, Francisca Leal, Erick Mejias, Freddy Madariaga, Jessica Morales, José Vicente Moreno, Maria Daniela Povea, Andrés Valenzuela, Soledad Diaz de la Fuente, Natalia Frank
Organization: National Council for Culture and Arts of Chile
With the support of: DIRAC, Fundación Imagen de Chile

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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