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Liverpool Biennial Project

Part 1 Project 2004
Neil Charlton
University of Liverpool Liverpool UK
The notion of the rhizome was taken as a metaphor to assemble a structure that acts as a point of connectability for different functions to be linked unhierarchically.

The Biennial Centre is, thus, just one common point on an ephemeral network of thoughts, actions, memories, motives, changes and movements each following its own process of permanent becoming. Art, its creation and appreciation, were considered to be temporalities of a rhizomatic system in evolution.

With this in mind, The Biennial Centre was conceived not a as the start or culmination of an experience, for these expressions imply beginnings and ends. The Centre is simply a waypoint from which individuals may be able to appreciate their position in the complex rhizomatic structure in which art, as well as themselves, are inscribed.

Neil Charlton


According to the notion of the rhizome developed by Deleuze and Guattari, social structures do not exists in a vacuum but are always intertwined in complex ways. Thus, the purpose of this project, the building for the Liverpool Biennial, was to unsettle the experience of the biennial by displaying not only finalized art pieces created by internationally recognized artists but also unveiling the numerous other systems art is attached to: economics, politics and also architecture.

For this reason, the architectural response is an unfinished and constantly changing structure where different elements, systems and functions meet and clash at the same time. Communication is permitted between the different components of the building —so as to allow for the building to fulfil its purpose—, yet it does not try to reconcile the differences between systems. On the contrary, architecture appears as a tool to reveal the complex reality of art institutions such as the biennial.

2004
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