In October 2015, the City of Chicago will launch the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennial, North America’s largest international survey of contemporary architecture.

Chicago Architecture Biennial

The State of the Art of Architecture

October 3– January 6, 2016

Press and professional previews: October 1–2, 2015
Public opening days and programs: October 3–4, 2015

Chicago, IL

Co-Artistic Directors: Joseph Grima and Sarah Herda

Public Discussion on January 15, 2015 

The City as Site: Global Dialogues
Chicago Architecture Biennial’s Co-Artistic Directors Sarah Herda and Joseph Grima will lead a public discussion featuring Tatiana Bilbao, Santiago Borja, Jose Castillo, Frida Escobedo, and Alberto Kalach at the Museo Jumex in Mexico City. A platform for discussing the current state of the field, the event is the first in a series of conversations with architects in select cities on each continent.

Museo Jumex
January 15, 8pm

For the 2015 Chicago Architecture Biennial, Co-Artistic Directors Joseph Grima and Sarah Herda have selected the title The State of the Art of Architecture. Through its constellation of exhibitions, full-scale installations, and program of events, the Chicago Architecture Biennial will offer an opportunity to take stock of architectural projects and experiments from around the world. With an incredible breadth of design approaches, research interests, and cultural perspectives, it will offer a global stage for debate and the exchange of ideas.

What is The State of the Art of Architecture today? More than a profession or a repertoire of built artifacts, architecture is a dynamic cultural practice that permeates fundamental registers of everyday life—from housing to education, from environmental awareness to economic growth, from local communities to global networks. In an age of accelerated change, today’s architects, artists, designers, planners, and activists are developing an extraordinary range of visionary ideas that test the limits of these realms of everyday life. As a platform for the creative breakthroughs that are reimagining the ways we inhabit and shape the world around us, the Chicago Architecture Biennial will bring an international and intergenerational network of architectural talent together to explore the ambitions, challenges and possibilities that are fueling the architectural imagination today and steering the future of the field.

The City as Site
The setting for a succession of pivotal episodes in modern architecture and urbanism, and a context in which architects such as Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Mies van der Rohe developed revolutionary projects, Chicago will operate as a nexus for the ideas and practices that are driving global architectural culture in the 21st century.

The Chicago Architecture Biennial’s program will extend throughout Chicago, with the main exhibition at the Chicago Cultural Center, installations in Millennium Park, and the Stony Island Arts Bank, a new cultural venue founded by acclaimed artist Theaster Gates on the South Side.

For its first commissioned project, photographer Iwan Baan captures the dynamic urban setting of this exciting new venture.

Image: Sarah Herda, director of the Graham Foundation in Chicago and Co-Artistic Director of Chicago Architecture Biennale. Photo: Adam Laycock