The seventh edition of the International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam, IABR–2016 THE NEXT ECONOMY took place in and around the former warehouse Fenixloods II in the Rotterdam district of Katendrecht. Led by chief curator Maarten Hajer, an international curator team once again focused on the future of the city, investigating the relationship between design and tomorrow’s economy. IABR–2016 presented more than 60 projects on 2,600 m2 of floor space. Together, they showed a range of possible futures for, among others, living and working, clean energy, regional development, and healthcare.

51N4E was particularly involved in that edition as Freek Persyn was offered a position as co-curator, while a team of 51N4E also conceived the scenography of the exhibition. The office designed a flexible space for learning, reflecting and sharing. A space that can simultaneously hold production and debate and that remains open-ended. This low-threshold design stimulated the feeling of involvement of the visitors, allowing everyone to engage with the content in their own way. 51N4E also made use of that space with a series of events and talks facilitating the active participation of visitors in the discussion about the future of the city.

Two projects developed by 51N4E were on show in the exhibition: the pilot project ‘Labo XX: De Lageweg’ and ‘Atelier Albania: The Metabolism of Albania’.

  • Location

    Rotterdam, The Netherlands

  • Client

    IABR – International Architectural Biennale Rotterdam

  • Design

    June 2015 - April 2016

  • Construction

    February 2016 – April 2016

  • Exhibition

    May 2016 – July 2016

  • Curators

    Maarten Haaijer - Main curator
    George Brugmans, Joachim Declerck, Jandirk Hoekstra, Freek Persyn, Michiel van Iersel, Daan Zandbelt

  • 51N4E project team

    Johan Anrys, Freek Persyn, Aline Neirynck, Charlotte Schmidt, Benoit Lanon, Lieselore Vandecandelaere

  • Contractor

    Bart Cuppens

  • Programme

    scenography expo 2016 ‘ The Next Economy’

  • Site surface

    2.650 m² (expo surface)

  • Construction costs

    € 175.000 (production exhibition)