The 15th International Architecture Biennale, which drew to a close recently in Venice, saw a record number of visitors at Australia’s exhibit, The Pool. Over a period of six months, The Pool drew more than 100,000 visitors, making it Australia’s most visited exhibition on record.

Presented by the Australian Institute of Architects and curated by Aileen Sage Architects (Isabelle Toland and Amelia Holliday) with Michelle Tabet, the exhibition used the pool as a lens through which to explore Australian cultural identity.

AIA National President Ken Maher was not surprised by the high visitor numbers. He explained that the compelling simplicity of The Pool offered an experience of reflection and respite within the intense content of the Architecture Biennale exhibits, engaging visitors in a sense of egalitarian culture and unique landscape that informs Australian architecture.

Planning and preparation for Australia’s participation in the 2018 International Architecture Biennale – La Biennale di Venezia – is underway with the Call for Creative Director(s) to launch in January 2017. The new Venice Biennale Committee will be chaired by Victorian Government Architect Jill Garner and Janet Holmes à Court will again take the reins as Commissioner for 2018.

Image: Australian Pavilion – The Pool by Aileen Sage Architects (Amelia Holliday and Isabelle Toland) with Michelle Tabet. Photo: Brett Boardman