15th International Architecture Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia

‘Diminished Capacity’

Established in 1980 curated by Paolo Portoghesi, the International Architecture Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia has developed into the world’s foremost architecture event. It’s the leading forum for the exploration of architectural ideas, the social architecture, the pre-eminent showcase for building design and the biggest and most publicized gathering of the international design and architecture community. What better place for the first Nigerian Pavilion’s architectural creativity and vision to take the world stage?

La Biennale di Venezia promotes debate about the architectural and urban design issues confronting communities and societies around the world. It’s a highly stimulating event that brings together renowned architects , theorists, connections with contemporary art and young practitioners on the rise.

Some countries have permanent national pavilions in Venice; others stage their exhibitions in historic buildings.

The Nigerian Pavilion have chosen an industrial building – the Spazio PUNCH, where a site-specific exhibition of the architect – artist Ola-Dele Kuku will be accommodated.

The 15th International Architecture Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia starts with the two-day opening ceremonies (perhaps the most prestigious occasions about international architecture), which includes a host of activities and opportunities to tour the exhibitions and meet their curators.

Each edition of la Biennale di Venezia has a theme set by the events director, to which the creators of the national exhibitions respond. It appeals to a large and highly focused audience: architects, designers and urban planners, naturally, but also companies that support architecture, clients that commission it, institutions that teach it and the media that publish it.

In 2014, 66 countries staged exhibitions at la Biennale di Venezia and attracted 240,000 visitors. More than 3,300 media were accredited, and 120 universities took part in the educational programme of la Biennale di Venezia .


Mr. Nkanta George Ufot

(Director – International Cultural Relations, Ministry of Information and Culture)

Commissioner’s note:

The 15th International Architecture Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia will be the first time that Nigeria will feature in this world renowned event, therefore, it is absolutely necessary for us to integrate and collaborate with consultants and partners with experience and previous involvement at la Mostra di Architettura This would facilitate the establishment of a strong foundation for the development and continuation of our participation in future events of la Biennale di Venezia.

‘The proposed project theme titled ‘Diminished capacity’, is aimed at the awareness of the contemporary global phenomenon of ‘Socio-Cultural Conflicts’, with specific focus on the role of ‘Information / Communication’ and the ‘Mass Media’. The exhibition would be presented as a reaction to the frictions of social communication and the mass media, vis-à-vis the notion of a unitary tendency of society and common values.

The contemporary sociology of mass media communication reveals a consistent presentation of agendas rather than reports which are illustrated by selected interest in particularities, focus and oversight’.

Nkanta George Ufot (15th International Architecture Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia 2016).

Commisioner’s biography

Nkanta George Ufot (Akwa Ibom, Nigeria – 1959), has been engaged by the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture since 1997 as the Assistant Chief Cultural Officer. He was appointed as the Chief Cultural Officer in 2000, and in 2003 he became the assistant director.

His relentless efforts in the promotion and sustenance of bilateral cultural relation, together with the implementation of cultural cooperation between Nigeria and other countries (through cultural exchange programmes), resulted in his progressive professional achievements within the Ministry of Information and Culture.

In 2011, Nkanta George Ufot was the Director and Head of Department of Culture at the Ministry, and Policy Adviser on issues relating to cultural development in Nigeria.

He is also the recipient of several awards including the Presidential Award on Service Delivery, and the Letter of Commendation for Excellent Performance in the Success of Nigerian Golden Jubilee (from the Secretary to the Government of the Federation SGF), for his outstanding contribution in 2011.

He represents the Ministry of Information and Culture as guest speaker at various international conference, cultural events and on the board of the National Theatre and National Troupe of Nigeria, the National Council for Arts and Culture, the National gallery of art, and the National Institute for Cultural Orientation. Nkanta George Ufot currently lives and works in Abuja, Nigeria.


Mrs. Camilla Boemio

(curator, writer, critic)

Curator’s biography

Camilla Boemio (Roma, Italy – 1975) is a writer, curator, university consultant who works at the intersection of culture, politics and contemporary aesthetics.

Boemio together with Fabrizio Orsini founded and directed the thematic Associazione Arte Contemporanea – AAC platform in 2007. The AAC works to honour multiple ways of engaging in dialogue and to build up the community surrounding socially engaged art and architecture, via close collaborations with national and international institutions. The curator is a member of AICA; International Association of Art Critics, founded in 1948, supporting critical discourse in the visual arts to develop international co-operation in the fields of artistic creation, dissemination and cultural development.

She curated the art-science section of the ‘ISWA European Project’, and ‘Cities’, the art exhibition of the preview of Festa del’Architectura della Rome, (with the lectio magistralis of Paolo Soleri at Auditorium Parco della Musica), and also at TAM – Torrance Art Museum in the South Bay of Los Angeles. At the 55th Biennale di Venezia, Camilla Boemio was the deputy curator of the National Pavilion of the Maldives, and her curatorial engagements include several exhibitions in numerous museums including Macro in Roma, at Khoj in New Dehli, Torrance Art Museum, South Bay of Los Angeles, and collaborated with many prominent artists.

The curator – writer has publishes various articles, texts and interviews, which have appeared in several magazines, reviews, and catalogues. She currently lives and works in Rome, Italy.


Mr. Ola-Dele Kuku

(architect – artist)

Exhibitor’s biography

Ola-Dele Kuku (Lagos, Nigeria – 1963) studied at the Southern California Institute of Architecture – (SCI-Arc), in Los Angeles, California, and in Vico Morcote, Ticino, Switzerland.

His private practise (Ola-Dele Kuku Projects), initiated in Milan, Italy in 1991, and focused primarily on conceptual interventions in architecture with special interest in philosophy, theory, and composition. He has since then worked on several award winning projects over the years which include drawings, objects and installations. His awards includes the prestigious ‘Grand Prize – Prime Minister’s Prize’ Award for the IFI Nagoya International Design Competition, Nagoya, Japan / ‘License of Honour’ Tech-Art Prize Award – Vlaamse Ingenieurs kamer, Antwerp, Belgium, / ‘Henry Van De Velde Prize – Prize of the Public Award at the Design Museum, Ghent, Belgium / ‘Mention Special pour la Créativité’ – Biennale pour l’Art Contemporain Africain Dak’ART / Lauréat – SPES Belgian Foundation Scholarship Award for artistic creation , Brussels Belgium.

His works have been presented in numerous international exhibitions, museum, galleries and art fairs, (in group and solo exhibitions), such as the Nagoya Center, Nagoya, Japan / Design Museum Gent, Belgium / Centre d’Art Contemporain Brussels, Belgium / Röhsska Museum, Gothenburg, Sweden / Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, France / Biennale pour l’Art Contemporain Africain Dak’ART Dakar, Senegal / International Biennial Design Festival, Sainte-Etienne, France / Narodni Techniké Museum, Czech Republic / Middelheim Museum Antwerp, Belgium / Torino Art Fair, / Musée d’Ixelles Brussels, Belgium / 7th Flanders Design Triennial, Genk Belgium. Various works from his projects have been published extensively, and are in prominent private collections, public institutions and foundations.

Ola-Dele Kuku has lectured and coordinated post-graduate thesis studios in several architecture academies, international conferences and workshops. He participates as guest speaker, at various international conferences on architecture, the environment and socio-cultural development. The architect – artist is presently working on the establishment of ‘Post-Conflict Rehabilitation’ Programme as an academic course of study in architecture, design, and art academies. He currently lives and works in Brussels, Belgium.

Associate Curator:  Mr. Koku Konu (architect)  /  Director – Creative Intelligence Association, Lagos, Nigeria.

Project Manager: Mr. Fabrizio Orsini  / Co-founder – AAC Platform, Macerata, Italy.

Exhibition Promotion and Communication:  Mrs. Kavita Chellaram  /  Director – Arthouse Contemporary Limited, Lagos, Nigeria.

Informatics and web: Frederic Ah-Thon / Brussels, Belgium.

Project  communication: Fabrizio Monaldi

Graphic Design: Gabriele Mizzoni

Photo / Editing: Barbara Rossi, Riccardo Tosetto, Filippo Peretti

Assistants: (in academic collaboration with architecture and art institutions)

Simone Spiga, – Università Iuav di Venezia (coordinator)

Giorgio Staffolani, – Accademia di Belle Arti di Macerata

Alice Mestriner, – Università Iuav di Venezia

Janina Lucia Beha, – Accademia di Belle Arti di Macerata

Federico Borroni, – Accademia di Belle Arti di Venezia

Cinzia Di Donna, – Università Iuav di Venezia

Collaborators and sponsors

Arthouse Contemporary Nigeria Ltd.

Exhibition and Communication:

Founded in 2007, Arthouse Contemporary is an international auction house that focuses on modern and contemporary art from West Africa. With auctions held twice a year in Lagos, Nigeria, Arthouse Contemporary aims to create awareness of the scope of contemporary art in the region, encourage international recognition towards its talented artists and strengthen the economy of its art market. Arthouse Contemporary has recently expanded with Arthouse-The Space, which organises exhibitions of contemporary art, as well as the Arthouse Foundation, a non-profit residency-based programme in Lagos. Arthouse Contemporary is pleased to announce the solo exhibition of Ola-Dele Kuku, entitled Diminished Capacity, to be held in Lagos in 2017.

LMS Gallery Brussels.

Production of two main exhibition pieces:

Neon text (‘ Africa is not a country! ‘)

Braille light Box

Philippe Laeremans Tribal Art Gallery Brussels.

Contribution of one main exhibition piece (private collection) :

Opera Domestica I (Teatro dell’Archivio)

KU LEUVEN Faculty of Architecture.

(International Masters Programme, Gent)

Intellectual support.

Orsogna Winery Italy.

Inauguration Catering.

Orsogna Wine- La Pasta di Aldo


Produzione di pavimenti in graniglia, pastina di cemento, mosaici, cementine per interni e per esterni dal 1902.