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Scottish Pavilion makes its mark on Venice with surreal unicorn mask

May 31 2016

Scottish Pavilion makes its mark on Venice with surreal unicorn mask
Prospect North, part of the Scottish Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale, has made its mark on festival-goers who have donned surreal unicorn, moose and polar bear masks to transport themselves from Italy to the Highlands..

Each animal head hides a set of virtual reality goggles which transport the wearer to the past, present and future of the Highlands from the clearances through to today’s inward migration and possible re-population in the future.

Elsewhere a three dimensional map handcrafted from timber outlines an expanded Nordic region with 3d visualisations and films triggered by viewers who scan the map with their mobile phones and tablets.

Neil Stephen of Dualchas Architects explained: “In this element we look at how the communities in the Highlands were destroyed, along with much of its Gaelic culture. We then look at how contemporary architecture is trying to connect with the past, but finding that it is largely a privilege of the wealthy as the young still leave, pushed out by high land values. We then imagine a different future where economic opportunities to the north can repopulate the Highlands.”

The exhibition seeks to show how under population can be overcome through a fresh renewable energy push, high speed broadband and transport and a diplomatic drive to expand trade routes.

The Prospect North exhibition will run through to 25 June at Ludoteca Santa Maria Ausiliatrice in Venice.


#1 Posted by Dom on 1 Jun 2016 at 06:31 AM
Looks great, well done to all involved. Especially to Graham & Tom at lateral North, good to see they have followed through on the ideas from their Atlas. Is the exhibition coming to Scotland after or is it only in Venice?
Morag Bain
#2 Posted by Morag Bain on 2 Jun 2016 at 12:04 PM
Dom - given the content it is important that people in Scotland also get the benefit of seeing Prospect North - so yes it will be returning and touring to venues in Scotland from July. Venues and dates will be announced soon so please keep an eye out on the A&DS website
#3 Posted by Terra on 6 Jun 2016 at 02:21 AM
"So; people in the Scotland, they like-a-the acid yes?"
#4 Posted by clive on 6 Jun 2016 at 10:43 AM
I just don't 'get' the Biennale.
Seems like a love-in for academics.
What does it ACTUALLY achieve?

Am i alone?
#5 Posted by Ronald on 8 Jun 2016 at 19:17 PM
@4 Clive - have you ever actually been to the Biennale?
#6 Posted by Clive on 9 Jun 2016 at 13:20 PM
No, I haven't.
I also haven't seen anything that grabs me as worth a visit, either.

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