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SO – IL Currents
Small Description
Curador: Philip Johnson
The model for the unrealised pavilion In Bloom (2010) by SO – IL
The model for the unrealised pavilion In Bloom (2010) by SO – IL

Founded in New York in 2008, SO – IL is an architectural studio led by Florian Idenburg and Jing Liu that not only produces permanent buildings but also thinks about architecture in relation to time and duration. How long does something need to exist in the world for it to become architecture?


For SO – IL, temporary architectures — installations, pavilions, performances — allow practice to enter into dialogue with contemporary conditions, while the outcomes of their experimentations inform the studio’s more permanent work. This exhibition has been specially produced to accompany the major architectural intervention, Beeline, the studio’s largest ephemeral work to date and their first in Europe, and which will occupy the entirety of maat’s building for over six months. Currents is a timely reflection on discreet but poignant gestures that interrogate the very nature of architecture as a cultural practice, both as agency and artefact.


Twelve of the temporary projects the studio has formulated over the past decade are organised in six thematic pairs, or “currents”, bringing subjects the studio explores in its work to the fore. The exhibition is installed along the elliptical ramp at the heart of the museum, where 1:1 mock-ups, ephemera, models, books, the architects’ own voices and writings, critical texts penned by New York-based curator Beatrice Galilee and video contributions of past commissioners allow us “to meet the dynamic forces and soft transitions that ebb and flow in the life of one of the most exciting international architecture studios today”.


Exhibition design
SO – IL (Florian Idenburg, Martina Baratta, Summer Liu)
Graphic design
Geoff Han
Beatrice Galilee
Corinne van der Borch, Tom Piper
Iwan Baan, Laurian Ghinitoiu, Spirit of Place
Production of 1:1 mock-ups
J. C. Sampaio, Oficina do Convento, Casa das Espumas
Production of wallpaper
Go Factory
Art handling
Proofreading and translation
Kennis Translations
Videos translation and subtitling
Rita Matos
Sebastiaan Hanekroot


Video interviews with:
Anne Surak (Artistic Director, Exhibit Columbus), Barry Bergdoll (Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History and Archaeology and Director of Undergraduate Studies at Columbia University and Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design, MoMA, 2007–2013), Eva Franch i Gilabert (Director, Architecture Association, and Director of Storefront for Art & Architecture, 2010–2018), David van der Leer (Principal, DVDL Design Decisions and Director of the Architecture and Urban Studies programme, Guggenheim Museum, 2008–2013), Mark Lee (Chair of the Department of Architecture, Harvard Graduate School of Design and curator of Chicago Architecture Biennale, 2017) and Matthew Slotover (co-founder of Frieze Art Fairs).

MAAT Gallery
MAAT Gallery
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