Freeland | MVRDV

13th Venice Architecture Biennale | MVRDV and The Why Factory

29 aug 2012
25 nov 2012

By invitation of Director David Chipperfield, MVRDV and The Why Factory contribute to the 13th International Architecture Exhibition, entitled Common Ground. The main contribution consists of the collaborative project ‘Freeland’ forming part of the single exhibition in the Central Pavilion at the Giardini. Further contribution is made by Winy Maas and The Why Factory with ‘Porous City’ to the EU CITY Program, initiated by the European Forum for Architectural Policies (EFAP) representing Europe for the first time at the Venice Architecture Biennale.

Presented as an animated documentary on a multi-screen surround projection, Freeland explores the prospects of complete liberation of urban planning. It questions whether classical centralized planning is still needed in times of increased individualization and if instead a self-organized city can be imagined. What can be organized individually and when will we need our neighbours? What are the “minimal common grounds” of our developments? Freeland is rooted in two projects: it combines the practical side of the development strategy designed by MVRDV for Almere Oosterwold with the research on bottom up urbanism addressed by the AnarCity studio led by The Why Factory at TU Delft and the Berlage Institute.

MVRDV’s Almere Oosterwold is a revolutionary model in urban planning as it steps away from governmental dictate and invites organic urban growth, stimulating initiatives by which inhabitants can create their own neighbourhoods including public green, energy supply, water management, waste management, urban agriculture and infrastructure.

The Why Factory’s AnarCity unveils utopian scenarios that fantasize on radical liberated urbanization in different situations and contexts such as the fall of government, climate crises or voluntary anarchism. The movie takes the viewer on a time-travel back to the utopian Freeland. Successes, failures and surprises play out in a series of intriguing narratives

‘Freeland’ is a collaborative project by MVRDV and The Why Factory and was made possible by the financial support of the City of Almere.