For the recently opened Venice Biennale, Slovenian architects designed their national pavilion as a site-specific wooden structure that addresses the concepts of home and dwelling. The installation features 300 books by invited architects, artists, critics and curators from different backgrounds, and focuses on the "research by design" and "design by research" approaches to building domestic, public and urban structures and strategies.
The project responds to the Biennale’s theme “Reporting from the Front” by functioning like an abstract home doubling as a curated library that allows visitors to explore the concept of dwelling. It is also a nod to the seminal 1956 Patio & Pavilion project by Alison and Peter Smithson. Curators Aljoša Dekleva and Tina Gregorič of Dekleva Gregorič Architects conceived an inhabitable wooden structure made of a latticed system of bookshelves that marries public and private space. It creates a temporary domestic environment based on user experience.
The use of wood reflects the historical connection between Venice and Slovenia. Slovenia also has a very developed timber industry, which explains the architects’ desire to explore its potential use in creating domestic spaces. They used low-tech and high-tech construction techniques in building the structure. The main cavity acts as both a living space and library.