Dezeen Magazine

River Walk by Carol Ross Barney

Chicago Architecture Biennial announces participants for fifth edition

A selection of more than 70 architects, artists and designers including Carol Ross Barney, LOT-EK and Anupama Kundoo have been selected to participate in Chicago's architecture festival in the fall, organised around the theme "This Is a Rehearsal".

The Chicago Architecture Biennial (CAB) is set to return in September for its fifth edition, curated by the local art collective Floating Museum.

Participants have been selected from over 30 international cities, and range from individual architects to organisations and performance artists.

Chris T Cornelius Shelter
Top: the Chicago Riverwalk by Carol Ross Barney, who will be participating in the biennial. Photo by Kate Joyce Studios. Above: Trickster (2018) by Christopher T Cornelius, who will also be contributing. Photo is by Tom Harris Photography

The installations and events will take place at several sites throughout the city. The festival has partnered with Chicago institutions such as the Art Institute of Chicago and the Chicago Architecture Center as well as others to create activations.

Its theme – This Is a Rehearsal – will focus on how societal problems "transcend borders" and "investigate how architecture is integral to collective care and the improvement of urban life".

An interdisciplinary approach

Floating Museum plans to achieve this through an interdisciplinary approach, bringing together people from across fields to work collaboratively to address the theme.

"Floating Museum considers the city as a framework for rehearsal, where the horizontal field of activity becomes a convivial palace for innovation, memory, and change," said the collective.

"In this view, individuals, community organizations, institutions, and municipal authorities are invited to participate as equals –  which opens new possibilities for collaboration across disciplines, geographies, and histories."

Such cross-disciplinary installations include a planned collaboration between New York design studio LOT-EK, artistic director for theatre Christine Jones and the Poetry Foundation, who will collaborate on a yet-to-be-announced project.

Local architect and AIA gold medal winner Barney will showcase work done for DuSable Park, a waterfront park restoration project she spearheaded with Chicago-based Brook Architecture.

Architect Kundoo will showcase work done on social housing in India, which will be compared and constructed with social work being done in the US by architects such as Christopher T Cornelius of Studio:indigenous and design studio The Living's collaboration with local urban farm organisation Urban Growers Collective.

LOT-EK streetlights with multiple bulbs
Installations and events will take place throughout the city. The photo is of Hi-Lights (2018) by LOT-EK. Courtesy of LOT-EK

Specific details for the projects will be announced over the coming months, according to the organisers.

"CAB 5 promises a blend of architecture and art, historical references and challenges to practitioners for the future," said biennial board of directors chair Jack Guthman.

Other participants include Austrian art collective Gelitin, German architecture studio Barkow Leibinger, New York studio Para Project and France-based Feda Wardak.

The event has been taking place in the city since 2015. A full list of 2023's participants can be found here.

The Chicago Architect Biennial will take place throughout the city from 21 September 2023 to 2 January 2024. For more events, talks and fairs in architecture and design visit Dezeen Events Guide