Venice Architecture Biennale 2016

Every two years the exhibition halls and pavilions of the Arsenale and the Guardini are opened and filled with the works and visions of the global architectural community.

Visionary student works stand alongside the displays and pavilions of the great and famous – our architectural gods.

I saw the Biennale as a reflection of the importance of architecture in the service of humanity.

Forget the great monuments of the architectural glitterati, instead look at student works seeking to find village housing solutions for impoverished third world countries.

Forgive me if I digress here, but a traditional village house in PNG, built entirely from sustainable and local sourced bush materials, can be built for under $100 using your own labour and traditional materials.

When the sacks roof needs replacing, or when additional sleeping areas are required it is a simple and inexpensive exercise, dealt with within the clan or family.

The Venice Architecture Biennale showed us that there are grass-roots architectural movements, of great diversity, on every continent seeking find better ways to provide shelter for humanity.

There will always be a demand for monumental architecture, but perhaps the greater need is for basic, sustainable shelter: designed to reflect the wondrous creativity of humanity on our special and terribly endangered planet.