WOOD 2013 Exhibition calls on Students and Universities to Join the Future of Design & Planning

Tony Rollinson
Tuesday, 28th August 2012

Sweden's Virserum Art Museum is opening its doors to the world's students and universities during WOOD 2013, its fourth major exhibition on wood and sustainability. As UK woodsman Ben Law states below "the time for designing buildings and then sourcing the materials as an afterthought is over".

The Architecture of Necessity will play a bigger role at WOOD 2013, the triennial event for sustainable community building, which takes place in May next year.

The Virserum Art Museum is inviting architecture, design and engineering colleges and universities to participate. The Museum is open to most suggestions, but they are particularly interested in exciting wood constructions for their grounds, as well as future scenarios within the theme of a sustainable society.

WOOD 2013 will feature an in-depth presentations of the wood architecture of the future. Cutting edge architecture from all over the world will be exhibited, as well as new ideas in organic high-tech biologically grown building materials, casted wooden houses and more. The aim is to show that wood as a material will get a new significance in the future.

Support for the thinking behind WOOD 2013 has come from leading UK woodsman and author Ben Law. "We need to change the culture of how architects think," says Ben. "Architects need to start from the position of available local resources and once that is established, then move onto design." This is an argument those who are familiar with Ben's appearances on Channel 4's Grand Designs or readers of his ground breaking books The Woodland House and Roundwood Timber Framing will know well. "The time for designing buildings and then sourcing the materials as an afterthought is over," he says. It is with this sense of 'necessity' that WOOD 2013 is designed.

One of the Museum's main aims is to open a dialogue on the 'gestalt' (a German word for form, shape or the concept of 'wholeness') of a truly sustainable society. It will be asking how do we live, how do we organise ourselves, what are our priorities, what are our relations, what is our culture? The wish to present future visions and scenarios beyond our present status quo, where we strive for sustainability but are to scared to see the need for a paradigm shift.

During previous exhibitions colleges and universities have participated in different ways. In 2010 Students from the Faculty of Engineering at Lund University exhibited city planning projects. While over 40 students from 15 countries contributed towards the Chalmers University of Technology designing and building wooden structures on the Art Museum's grounds.

For further details please contact producer Annika Eriksson, [email protected] or call her on +46 701 755 373 to discuss ideas and opportunities in more detail.

The terms and conditions for the next round of the Architecture of Necessity will be presented in the second half of 2012. Applications are now welcome and are invited from all over the world.

Read our recent story on how Britain's Universities Go Green.

If you are a student or lecturer at one the UK's universities and would like to know more about permaculture, we are offering some FREE recent back issues of Permaculture magazine. All we need is one name, a university postal address and an idea of how many students are interested. If you are overseas and would like to receive the magazines all we ask is that you contact us and pay for the postage of the magazines to your university. For more details contact: [email protected]