The jury for the open call for the curatorial team of the Luxembourg Pavilion at the 19th Biennial of Architecture in Venice met on Tuesday, March 19 for the second session. The jury selected, among the three shortlisted teams, the project “Sonic Investigations” by Mike Fritsch, Alice Loumeau and Valentin Bansac as the winning proposal to represent Luxembourg at the Venice Architectural Biennial in 2025.

The jury would like to congratulate the three selected teams for the secound round for the quality of their projects and relevant topics they decided to tackle. The three teams proposed ideas based on a detailed knowledge and pertinent analysis of the Luxembourg territory, while placing it at the heart of contemporary issues and challenges.

Following a rich and fruitful discussion, the Jury unanimously selected the project “Sonic Investigations” by Mike Fritsch, Alice Loumeau and Valentin Bansac to design the Luxembourg Pavilion at the 19th Venice Architecture Biennale.

The project “Sonic Investigations,”centred around the acoustic practice of research on the Anthropocene, offers a sensitive exploration of Luxembourg’s territory, which cuts across different environments, positions, and voices. By reactivating our tendency to listen, it offers a new prism for understanding the territory, framing at the same time, the impact of human activity on our ecosystems.

The project was chosen for capacity to raise important contemporary issues related to the production of the built environment, its questioning of our normative apprehension of territories, well sourced and referenced documentation it draws on as well as its conceptual and curatorial consistency.

Its approach to research and design, driven by a desire to experiment and share new tools of understanding the built environment, convinced the jury, who also saw the opportunity to create a rich and positive dialogue around the questions raised about architecture and its related disciplines.

Statement of the curatorial team
Sonic investigations is an immersive, joyful and radical suggestion to focus on sound. In contemporary societies saturated with images, sight casts a shadow on other senses, key to fully apprehending the invisible dynamics of our sensitive relationship with territories. Following John Cage’s silent song 4’33’’, it is a proposal to close our eyes and actively listen. As a counter-project to the hegemony of images, the act of listening offers new possibilities to explore the built and natural environments and shift our focus towards giving voices to more-than-human agencies.

As a practical and theoretical research, the project serves as a tool to re-explore the dense territory of Luxembourg where sounds from biological, geological and anthropogenic beings blend into the intertwined soundscape of the Anthropocene. How to reveal the entangled character of specific contemporary situations in Luxembourg? Through listening, a new uncanny experience of space offers to reveal more than what we see as an opportunity to foster new thinking and sensorial approaches to architectural practices.

Photo © Simon Nicoloso

Biographies of the Curatorial Team
Mike Fritsch is a Luxembourgish architect, urbanist and educator working between Luxembourg and France. As a practising architect, Mike oscillates between large-scale transformation strategies and architectural repairs, in collaboration with l’AUC, this after having spent several years at OMA in Rotterdam. In parallel, Mike is teaching at the ENSA-Marseille where he manipulates new territorial narratives on adaptations and social interactions of the “already there”.

Alice Loumeau is a French-Canadian architect, researcher and cartographer. She conducts spatial investigations through writing and cartography, exploring the mutating territories of the Anthropocene. Alice graduated from the Experimentation in Arts and Politics master’s degree led by Bruno Latour at the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po). Alice has worked as an architect in Rotterdam at OMA/AMO, in Paris and London, and participates in exhibitions, publications, and residencies, including at the Villa Albertine in Marfa, Texas, in 2024.

Valentin Bansac is an architect, researcher and photographer from France. He previously worked at OMA/AMO with Rem Koolhaas where he participated in Countryside, the future, research and exhibition project at Guggenheim New York. Valentin graduated from the Experimentation in Arts and Politics master’s degree led by Bruno Latour at the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po). He is currently teaching a two-year research endeavour named Domesticated Foodscapes at the EPFL and participates in the program Organismo: Art in Applied Critical Ecologies facilitated by TBA21, a contemporary art foundation in Madrid.

In 2022, Alice and Valentin co-initiated, a tentacular collective endeavour that explores new territorial narratives through interdisciplinary alliances and the accumulation of media.

Winning curatorial teams of the 1st round

The Jury

The jury of the call for projects for the conception of the Luxembourg Pavilion at the 19th Venice Architecture Biennale met on Tuesday, January 9 and selected the three projects for the second jury session from among 8 applications received.

The jury appreciated the relevance of the themes developed in the selected applications and is confident that they will help to build a discourse around the Architecture discipline.

The members of the jury for the call for entries for the Luxembourg pavilion would like to thank all the applicants for the interest they have shown, by taking part in the call, in Luxembourg’s presence at this international event in 2025. The jury also salutes the work undertaken by the various teams on this occasion.

Selected teams :

The jury is made of:

▪ Maribel Casas, Director, luca – Luxembourg Center for Architecture;
▪ Michelle Friederici, President, Ordre des Architectes et des Ingénieurs conseils Luxembourg;
▪ Claudine Hemmer, Visual Arts and Architecture Advisor, Ministry of Culture Luxembourg;
▪ Marija Marić, Curator of the Luxembourg Pavilion 2023;
▪ Eléonore Mialonier, Project Manager Architecture/Design/Crafts, Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg;
▪ Marion Waller, General Director, Pavillon de l’Arsenal, Paris;
▪ Nemanja Zimonjić, Director, Ten Studio, Zürich/Belgrade.

The deadline for the second round is March 15, 2024, at midnight. The laureate will be announced on March 27, 2024.

More details about the call can be found here.

The unmissable Biennale di Venezia has drawn to a close with the Luxembourg Pavilion Down to Earth designed and curated by Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, a confirmed hit with the public.

Officially opened on 18 May 2023 in the presence of HRH the Great Duchess, the Minister for Culture Sam Tanson, Luxembourg’s Ambassador to Rome HE Michèle Pranchère-Tomassino and over 200 guests, the Luxembourg Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale has been packed ever since. The Down to Earth exhibition welcomed a total of 102,118 visitors during the entire Biennale which itself recorded over 285,000 visitors, along with 14,150 visitors to the preview, making it the second most visited Architecture Biennale ever.

Down to Earth, designed by architects, curators and researchers Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, was a critical behind-the-scenes exploration of the current paradigm of space mining, as well as its media narratives. Replicating a Lunar Laboratory—the research spaces designed to not only run full-scale tests of space mining technologies but also operative as media studios producing the visual imaginaries of the extractions on the Moon and beyond—the exhibition included contributions by Armin Linke, Lev Bratishenko, Jane Mah Hutton, Anastasia Kubrak, Amelyn Ng, Bethany Rigby, and Fred Scharmen, as well as collaborations with different institutions, including Canadian Centre for Architecture.

The pavilion was also a meeting point for fruitful encounters between creatives, curators, and the general public. In addition to the visits organised in September during the Pavilion Days, side-events such as public lectures and roundtables were also held both in Luxembourg and abroad.

“Looking back at our project in Venice, we find ourselves truly humbled by all the incredible encounters, conversations, and collaborations that deeply shaped our project. Starting with the Moon, but coming down to Earth, our exhibition aimed at raising a critical discussion around our relationship with resources, testing at the same time the boundaries between curatorial work, research, and social engagement. We thank all the conversation partners and collaborators for contributing to this project, the journalists for their important questions and curiosity about our work in Venice, and the institutions who supported our work from the very beginning”, the curators Francelle Cane and Marija Marić stated.

The exhibition was not only a success with the public, but also featured in the national and international press.

The publication Staging the Moon: Resource Extraction Beyond Earth, developed during the 18th Venice Architecture Biennale, contains texts by the curators and photographs by artists Armin Linke and Ronni Campana. It explores the topic of extra-terrestrial resources, highlighting the inextricable links between space mining and its portrayal in the media, the legal framework for its development, as well as the concept of commons and comradeship.
The publication costs €32 and is available from the publisher Spector Books.

Kultur | lx, following a decision by the Ministry of Culture, was tasked for the first time with commissioning the Luxembourg Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, a role in which it will continue for the development of future art and architecture pavilions in conjunction with the Luxembourg cultural institutions involved.

Following a call for applications for the Research and Creative Residency for Architects, Architectural Researchers, Illustrators and Authors at the Academia Belgica in Rome, 2024, 6 proposals were received. At a meeting on 13 October, the jury commended the range, focus and quality of the projects submitted.  The jury members were César Reyes Nájera (University of Luxembourg, Master in Architecture), Karine Bouton (neimënster) and Nathalie Kerschen (Resident 2023).
The jury unanimously decided to award the residency to Dirk Kesseler for his proposal ‘Research into architecture in illustration’.

Jury Statement
The jury was impressed by Dirk Kesseler’s multidisciplinary approach and his clear and frank proposal. It was also won over by his sensitive and extremely personal approach to architecture—which has gradually become the central focus of his work and modus operandi—and the sound presentation of his arguments.

The jury also felt that the practical research Dirk Kesseler proposed to conduct in Rome, a city that is representative of antiquity and thus a stark contrast to the city where he lives, would undoubtedly be an excellent opportunity for him to develop his practice and offer an interesting challenge.

The (extract from the application file)
“Exterior and interior architectural structures, became centerpieces of my compositions, functioning as visual frames, set pieces and integral parts of my storytelling. I spent more time noticing subtle details in the structural and decorative parts of my surroundings, analysing changes in material and how it affects light and shadows.
But my artistic ambition is not to display built structures in a photographic view, but to rearrange their most recognisable shapes into interesting graphical compositions: expanding and stretching spaces to deliver unusual viewpoints, provoking a range of feelings from excitement to the unease –  sometimes even bordering on the surreal, not adhering to the traditional modes of perspective drawing, but manipulating space for the desired effect and many times not even using the architectural spaces as set pieces for human narratives, but letting them become the characters themselves, devoid of human interaction.”


About Dirk Kesseler
Dirk Kesseler (1995) is Luxemburgish illustrator, animator and graphic designer based in Berlin.
He graduated with a degree in illustration from the Design Akademie Berlin (now called the Berlin School of Design and Communication) in 2019 and completed a Masters at the Universität der Künste Berlin in 2023.
He uses both traditional and digital drawing techniques to connvey his naive sense of humour and absurd dreams. His works spans several disciplines, including comic books, editorials, posters and product design.
Dirk Kesseler  has presented his work at several international events, such as Negotiation Matters: Berlin, Tel Aviv (2018) and Neurotitan (2020) and Tabook Festival (2021).
He received a Luxembourg Music Award in the category Best Upcoming Artwork Designer (2018), the Shimon-Peres Prize for the collective project Negotiation Matters (2021), and a Merit Award during 3×3 Annual No. 19 (2022).


Since its official inauguration on May 18 in the presence of H.R.H. the Grand Duchess, the Minister of Culture Sam Tanson, H.E. Michèle Pranchère-Tomassino, Ambassador of Luxembourg in Rome, and more than 200 professionals, the Luxembourg pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale is a resounding success with the public. Halfway through the Biennale, which closes on 26 November, the “Down to Earth” exhibition had attracted nearly 30,000 visitors by 30 August.

Starting from Luxembourg’s role in the development of space mining, the exhibition Down to Earth by Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, critically explores what goes on behind the scenes of the space industry and the media and scientific narratives on which its future development is based. Conceived as a Lunar laboratory – research spaces designed to test space robots in real life but also serving as media studios for the promotion of of the race to space – the exhibition in the Luxembourg pavilion draws on contributions from numerous researchers, artists and collaborators.

The exhibition has not only been very well received by the public, but also by the press:

Mine, all mine. The Moon has long inspired architects. Now curators Francelle Cane and Marija Marić image what would look like if human started mini nits resources” – Financial Times, May 20, 2023.

(…) architecture can be a force for emancipation and a stimulating intellectual field. The Luxembourg pavilion in Venice is proof of this.”, Tageblatt, May 20, 2023.

The curators want to launch a debate on the consequences of perceiving space as an economic area crossed by national borders. (…) For their exhibition, the curators will transport the moon to the Arsenale and reproduce it ‘down to earth’. (…) In this way, the Luxembourg contribution to the biennial is the simulation of a simulation“. – Bauwelt, 15 May 2023.

Upcoming events :

14 + 15.09 | Pavilion Days, Venice
During Pavilion Days, to be held on 14 and 15 September, curators Francelle Cane and Marija Marić will welcome professionals for a guided tour (by invitation), each day at 11.15am as part of a tour route through the heart of the Arsenale.

21.09 | “Down to Earth” conference, Luxembourg
For their first public lecture in Luxembourg, the two curators of the Luxembourg pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2023, Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, present their research project and the exhibition “Down to Earth”.
Further information:

The Down to Earth exhibition is open until 26 November.

Following a month of assembly, the Sale d’Armi of the Arsenale in Venice, which has hosted the Luxembourg pavilion of the art and architecture biennials since 2018, finally opened its doors to the public on the 20th of May. Down to Earth, the exhibition developed by architects, curators and researchers Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, has received an outstanding response from both the press and visitors.

The opening week of the Venice Architecture Biennale represents a special moment for the professionals who attend, between a family reunion and a giant symposium, drawing in all the profiles, emerging or confirmed, and all the trends in architectural research. The professional days are important for those who defend a project, both to expand their network and to attract media attention.

During this marathon, the two curators Francelle Cane and Marija Marić conducted a series of interviews with the national and international press, before officially inaugurating the Luxembourg pavilion on the 18th of May, in the presence of H.R.H. Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, Sam Tanson, Minister of Culture, H.E. Michèle Pranchère-Tomassini, Luxembourg’s Ambassador to Rome, and more than two hundred Luxembourg and foreign guests.

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A national pavilion focused on the issue of resources

Starting from Luxembourg’s role in the development of space mining, the exhibition Down to Earth by Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, critically explores what goes on behind the scenes of the space industry and the media and scientific narratives on which its future development is based. Conceived as a Lunar laboratory – research spaces designed to test space robots in real life but also serving as media studios for the promotion of of the race to space – the exhibition in the Luxembourg pavilion draws on contributions from numerous researchers, artists and collaborators.

The scenographic elements developed during the collective research process offer three ways of understanding the subject through a film, a workshop and a book. Armin Linke’s film Cosmic Market, made in collaboration with the Pavilion’s curators, shows the links between scientific research and the different interpretations of space legislation, between technological development and the creation of new markets, both on Earth and beyond. A collaboration between the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA) and the Luxembourg Pavilion, the workshop “How to: mind the moon” takes as its starting point a reflection on five lunar materials, sketching out a new type of “materials library” in which humour is not absent. The book Staging the Moon, a stand-alone piece published by Spector Books (Leipzig; design: Studio OK-RM), contains critical essays by the two curators, as well as contributions by Armin Linke and photographer Ronni Campana.

Down to Earth thus presents in an immersive and inventive way the results of essential research into the question of resource exploitation, which fits perfectly with the theme of the Biennale’s international exhibition “Laboratory of the Future”, curated by Lesley Lokko. Rooted in the blind spots of official history, the international exhibition places architectural reflection under the sign of imagination, its main factor of change, and of ethics, which must guide us in our approach to the common space where we draw our resources.

This topic was at the heart of “(Re) penser les ressources“, a francophone discussion organised by the Belgian Pavilion in which the women curators participated on Saturday the 20th of May, alongside contributors and curators from the Belgian, Canadian and French pavilions.

Awards in line with the artistic direction

The jury of the 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, composed of Ippolito Pestellini Laparelli (president, Italy), Nora Akawi (Palestine), Thelma Golden (United States), Tau Tavengwa (Zimbabwe) and Izabela Wieczorek (Poland), determined a list of winners that perfectly reflected the key themes of the Biennale: “decolonization and decarbonization”.

The Golden Lion for the best national participation was awarded to Brazil for an exhibition based on research and “an architectural intervention centred on the philosophies and imaginaries of indigenous and black populations that considers the modalities of reparation”. A special mention as a national entry went to Great Britain for the curatorial concept and spatial setting “celebrating the power of everyday rituals as forms of resistance and spatial practices in diasporic communities”.

On the international side, the Golden Lion went to DAAR – Alessandro Petti and Sandi Hilal for “their longstanding political engagement with architectural and learning practices of decolonisation in Palestine and Europe”.

In addition, Demas Nwoko, a Nigerian-born artist, designer and architect, was awarded the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 18th International Architecture Exhibition. Demas Nwoko has been at the forefront of modern art in Nigeria. As an artist, he strives to incorporate contemporary techniques into architecture and scenography to highlight African subjects in much of his work. His work will be on display in the Stirling Pavilion in the Giardini.

For its first appointment as organiser and coordinator of the Luxembourg pavilion, Kultur | lx was able to rely on the experience of luca – Luxembourg Center for Architecture. In charge of the Luxembourg presence in Venice for both the Art and Architecture Biennials, Kultur | lx intends to further extend its contacts and capitalise upon the successful experience of this biennial.

Down to Earth, by Francelle Cane and Maria Marić can be seen until 26 November 2023, 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, Arsenale, Sale d’Armi A, 1st floor.

Luxembourg has been a regular participant at the International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia for the past 20 years, along with around 70 other countries. Since its launch in 1980, this event has been the main international meeting place for specialists in architecture, a discipline whose major contemporary trends it helps to showcase and define. As well as raising the profile of those involved, Luxembourg’s attendance allows it to contribute to international exchanges and debates on architecture, whose theoretical foundations and fields of application are constantly expanding.

In 2022, Luxembourg’s Ministry of Culture delegated curatorship of the Luxembourg Pavilion (architecture and art) to Kultur | lx – Arts Council Luxembourg, in collaboration with luca – Luxembourg Center for Architecture.

The winning team is made up of two curators, Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, surrounded by an Advisory Board and a team of contributors in the fields of scenography, content production and publishing.

About Down to Earth

From the development of human settlements on the Moon to the asteroid mining of rare mineral and metals—the wild imaginaries of extraction-driven growth have, quite literally, transcended the boundaries of the Earth. This displacement of resource exploitation from the exhausted Earth to its ‘invisible’ backstages—celestial bodies, planets, and ultimately, the Moon itself—calls for an urgent debate on the impact this shift will have on our understanding of land, resources and the commons.  critically unpacks the project of space mining through the perspective of resources. It starts from the following questions: How does tDown to Earthhis new iteration of the space race, wrapped in the false promises of endlessly available resources, depart from the existing extractivist logic of capitalism and its destructive environmental and social effects on the ground? How will the ongoing privatisation of space, characterised by a sharp turn towards private companies as main actors in the exploitation of space resources, affect the current status of extraterrestrial bodies as a form of ‘planetary commons’? What are the materialities of space mining—its logistics, technologies, infrastructures and workers—and their relationship to the existing geopolitical power hierarchies? And finally, how are architects to mediate critically the ramifications of these material fictions, rooted in the existing paradigms of growth?

Designed as mock-ups of the Moon’s landscapes, ‘lunar laboratories’ have emerged in recent years as a default feature that many institutions and private companies around the world use as infrastructure for testing different mining technologies. However, within the context of speculative economies of the space mining industry, the role of the lunar laboratories seems to go beyond being merely spaces meant for carrying out scientific experiments, instead appearing also as media studios for the production of imagery of human technologies on the Moon. The exhibition Down to Earth uses the lunar laboratory as a site for unpacking the tech industry’s space exploration narratives. With the space of the Pavilion itself turned into a lunar laboratory, a stage where the performance of extraction takes place, Down to Earth focuses on the unveiling of the backstages of the space mining project, offering another way of seeing the Moon that goes beyond the current optics of the Anthropocene.

The 18th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia will take place from May 20 to November 26. The Luxembourg Pavilion is located at Arsenale (Sale d’Armi, 1st floor).

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Following a call for applications for the research and creation residency for architects, architecture researchers, illustrators, and authors at the Academia Belgica in Rome in 2023, 6 proposals were assessed. At a meeting on 24 January, the jury welcomed the range, focus and quality of the projects submitted. The jury members were Eline Bleser (Luxembourg Center for Architecture), Claude Kremer (National Centre for Literature) and Anne Simon (Resident 2022).

The jury unanimously decided to award the residency to Nathalie Kerschen for her research proposal URBS ANIMALIS.

Jury Statement
The jury was particularly impressed by the theme Natalie Kerschen proposed, a natural extension of her PhD research. The precision and methodology underpinning her thinking, combined with the almost intuitive approach she plans to take in the field, were rated highly by the jury which commended her for the exemplary nature of her academic approach.

The topic proposed by Nathalie Kerschen dovetails perfectly with current debates – still in the early stages – questioning current thinking about cities from the perspective of inclusive coexistence living beings in urban spaces. It is therefore highly relevant to current research in the field of architecture and the way in which we inhabit nature.

Project (extract from application)
“Drawing inspiration from the hermeneutic-phenomenological approach to architecture and recent developments in eco-phenomenology—i.e. the philosophical attempt to an ‘experience of nature’ through ‘nature of experience’ (Toadvine)—and studies of animals and anthropology, my research creation projects—which lie at the intersection between architecture and speculative design—aim to renew the relationship with animals in Rome through the prism of what the phenomenologist David Abram calls ‘becoming animal’.

This proto-eco-phenomenological approach is based on the idea that human bodies are in harmony with non-human bodies on the basis of a combination of physical experiences and conditions. It can be linked to the concepts of ‘interanimality’, and ’empathy’ (Einfülung) developed by the philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty; a bodily experience shared by humans and animals. Since (eco)phenomenology focuses on the experience of animals, it offers a backdrop for examining the conditions and spatial contexts of non-human living beings from a familiar perspective, i.e. as co-inhabitants of our urban and rural spaces. At a time when exponential growth of urban populations, the extinction of species, and the loss of biodiversity seem irreversible, making animals visible in Rome means giving them a platform and bringing them back into focus for architects.”


About Nathalie Kerschen
After obtaining a master’s from the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture Paris-Malaquais and studying philosophy at Paris Sorbonne IV University, Nathalie Kerschen continued her academic studies at McGill University in Montreal. In November 2022, she defended her doctorate in the History and Theory Department at the Peter Guo-hua Fu School of Architecture on ‘Reclaiming Nature in Computational Architectural Design: From Biology to Phenomenology’. In addition to her academic studies, Nathalie has worked for international architect’s offices and been exhibited in contemporary art centres, including Casino – Forum d’art Contemporain in Luxembourg and iMal Art Center for Digital Cultures & Technology in Brussels. In 2022, she began to teach theory and practical courses in the Department of Design and Computation Arts at Concordia University in Montreal.

As a researcher, Nathalie has received several grants, including an AFR grant from the Luxembourg National Research Fund (2016-2020), a Schulich grant (2016), a Meita grant from McGill University (2016-2019), excellence grants for architecture graduates (2021) and an award on completing her doctorate (2022) from the Peter Guo-hua Fu School of Architecture.

The jury of the call for applications for the design of the Luxembourg Pavilion at the 2023 18th Venice Architecture Biennale met for the second session on Tuesday 19 July. It selected, among the three winning curatorial teams, the project Down to Earth by Francelle Cane and Marija Marić.

The jury would like to congratulate the three winning teams of the first session for the high quality of the submitted projects. The jury’s choice in this second phase was a tough one, as all the teams had done a great deal of work in formatting the documents submitted and had made meticulously prepared and well-defended oral presentations. The teams were able to provide a detailed analysis of the Luxembourg territory in the broadest sense and its inhabitants or users, while giving it a universal inflection by linking it to major contemporary issues: the question of land ownership and the management of space and resources, the tension between the normative nature of the relationship with the territory and a return to the body and the senses, or the narratives on which nations construct the scale through which they look at themselves and project themselves in space and time.

The Down to Earth project by Francelle Cane and Marija Marić was unanimously selected by the jury to design the Luxembourg Pavilion at the 18th Venice Architecture Biennale.

The project, focused on the question of extraterrestrial resources, their exploitation and the narratives that underlie the resulting economy, was chosen for both the topical and speculative nature of the theme, the clarity of the proposal, the precision of the reflections, sourced and referenced, and the societal issues it raises. The straightforwardness of the message, supported by a simple scenography, articulated around a model of the Moon, a collection of “take-away” essays, and three narrative videos, should allow the Biennial’s audience to enter the subject head-on.

The project highlights a topic that remains invisible to our eyes through a critical approach, it raises the issue of the resources of the earth’s soil at different scales, but above all it raises the issue of the future world that we are creating by pushing back the limits of the spaces colonised and exploited by man beyond the Earth.

[…] The unbridled imagination of extractive growth has, quite literally, transcended the boundaries of the Earth. This shift in mining from the exhausted Earth to its ‘invisible’ backstage areas – celestial bodies, planets, and eventually the Moon itself – calls for urgent reflection on the impact this shift will have on our conceptions of land, resources and the commons, both on the ground and beyond. Described as “the rising star of the space industry” and “a pioneer in the exploration and use of space resources”, Luxembourg, whose economy was once based on iron mining and steel production, appears as an important starting point for this debate.
Extract from the Application / Down to Earth by Francelle Cane and Marija Marić.

The winning team is made up of two curators, Francelle Cane and Marija Marić, surrounded by an Advisory Board and a team of contributors in the fields of scenography, content production (videos, texts), media and publishing. They also wish to rely on a solid network of Luxembourg and international partners.

Francelle Cane is an architect, graduated from the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture de Versailles – ENSAV (FR) (2018) and is a PhD student at the University of Luxembourg since 2021 (Topic: After the Ruin. On Property and Territorial Negotiation). She has worked as an architect (Paris, Berlin) and has curated and designed numerous exhibitions. Her exhibition Enter the Modern Landscape has has been awarded the International WERNAERS Fund for Research and the Diffusion of Knowledge (FNRS), Brussels (BE).

Marija Marić holds a PhD in Science from the Department of Architecture, ETH Zurich (2020) and two Masters degrees: a Master of Arts, Department for New Art Media, Academy of Arts, University of Novi Sad (RS) and a Master in Architecture, Faculty of Technical Sciences, Novi Sad (RS). She is currently an associate researcher at the Master in Architecture Programme, Department of Geography and spatial planning, University of Luxembourg. She has received numerous academic awards and scholarships for her research work.


Winning curatorial teams of the 1st session:


The Jury


The Venice Architecture Biennale
Although the format of the Venice Biennale is strongly rooted in the construction process of Western nations, it is nonetheless an international platform with a strong prospective dimension. Every other year, it offers architecture and all related disciplines the opportunity to share its most recent developments and its most critical questioning for the benefit of a flow of ideas that remains the heart of this event.
The 18th Venice Architecture Biennale, whose artistic director has been entrusted to Lesley Lokko, fully assumes this forward-looking heritage through its title “Laboratory of the future”, while clearly underlining the fields in which experiments must be conducted: ethics, climate and politics.

The jury of the call for projects for the conception of the Luxembourg Pavilion at the 18th Venice Architecture Biennale met on Wednesday, June 1 and selected the three winning projects for the second jury session from among 13 applications received.

The members of the jury of the competition for the realization of the Luxembourg pavilion of the 18th Venice Architecture Biennale – 2023 would like to thank all the candidates for the interest they have shown, by participating in this competition, in the presence of Luxembourg at this international event. They would also like to pay tribute to the work they have done on this occasion.

The jury chose three projects which, while rooted in spatial, political, ethical or social themes that are highly topical for the Luxembourg territory, are directly related to the major contemporary issues facing international architecture: access to resources and raw materials, the production and sharing of wealth and the narratives that result from it, the question of the “common” and “diversity”, the ways – normative or resilient – of inhabiting the world, the sustainability of buildings and their resistance to climatic assaults, in short all the challenges facing interconnected and expanding societies throughout the planet.

The jury has therefore favoured projects that place the inhabitants at the center of their concerns in order to involve them, in a horizontal manner, in the ongoing reflections on the built environment, housing, urbanisation and cohabitation. So many subjects of major political and cultural importance for the future of societies, whether Western or not.

The theme of the 18th Venice Architecture Biennale, “Laboratory of the future,” announced on May 31, emphasizes the prospective dimension of this event and outlines two important curatorial lines through two key-words: decarbonization and decolonization, “two gifts to the canon of architecture,” “two powerful words, both local and global,” which allow us to rethink our relationship to space and to people.

Selected curatorial teams:

The jury is composed of:

The deadline for the second round is July 14, 2022 and the winning project will be announced on July 22.