A proposal by a team from Carleton University is one of four to be shortlisted to curate the Canadian Pavilion at the 2020 Venice Biennale in Architecture. The Biennale is one of the most prestigious international platforms for architecture in the world. It draws more than 350,000 visitors worldwide to engage in critical conversations about contemporary architecture.

The team is comprised of a remarkable and interdisciplinary advising and collaborative team from around the world. The core team consists of (from the Azrieli School of Architecture & Urbanism) Professor Johan Voordouw, Professor Ozayr Saloojee and Professor Catherine Bonier and PhD student Émélie Desrochers-Turgeon. The team includes Carleton faculty Professor Zoe Todd from Carleton’s Department of Sociology and Anthropology, David Hugill (Geography and Environmental Studies) and Professor Jurek Elżanowski from Indigenous and Canadian Studies, in addition to Professor Karen Lutsky from the Department of Landscape Architecture at the University of Minnesota.

The team’s proposal explores the liquid boundaries and thresholds of Canada and the team aims to foster a critical position on Canada’s responsibilities to inland bodies of water, Indigenous nations, human and non-human agencies and the legal governance entanglements that shape Canada’s collective experiences as an idea and place. The exhibition proposal positions a number of interactive liquid landscape models and experiences that elicit an ethical imagery on how these waterscapes should be maintained, experienced and challenged.

The Fluid Boundaries team submitted a final proposal in January 2019 and followed up with an interview at the Canada Council for the Arts. The winning project, to be announced in February 2019, will serve as Canada’s official entry to the 2020 Venice Biennale in Architecture and will be housed in the newly restored Canadian Pavilion on the Biennale grounds in Venice, from May until November 2020. The Carleton Urban Research Lab is one of the partners on the Fluid Boundaries project