Scotland + Venice 2021 for the 17th International Architecture Exhibition

22 May – 21 November 2021, V&A Dundee

What if…?/ Scotland

What if…?/Scotland responds to the Biennale’s theme How will we live together?, seeking to re-engage the civic role of architects and designers by asking citizens from across Scotland to share their hopes and dreams for the future of the places they call home. 7N paired 25 people from 5 places across Scotland with 25 designers, architects, and artists – to share their hopes and dreams for the future of the place where they live. The architects and designers then used these wishes to begin exploring imaginative ideas in response to the community challenges being faced.

About the Exhibition
Participants in Annan workshop, collaborating with Beautiful Materials to explore the High Street. Image by Bash Art Creative

7 April 2021 — Commission Announcement

Alberta Whittle

Commissioned by the Scotland + Venice Partnership and curated by Glasgow International On behalf of the Scotland + Venice partnership, Creative Scotland is delighted to announce that Alberta Whittle has been commissioned to represent Scotland at the 59th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia with an exhibition of new work at the Arsenale Docks, S. Read more

image: Alberta Whittle by Matthew A Williams

8 June 2021 — Writing

The civic role of architecture

A close up picture of a hand holding an orange pencil writing on a card. There is also a card with the words I Wish printed on the front.

At the opening of What if...?/Scotland on 21 May, President of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland, Christina Gaiger gave these remarks, reflecting on the civic role of architecture and Scotland's architecture on the global stage.  I'd like to start off today by talking a little bit about the international recognition of Scottish architecture. Read more

2 June 2021 — Announcement

What if…?/Scotland – Exhibition Films

What if…?/Scotland films on show at the V+A Dundee (Image by Alan Richardson)

What if…?/Scotland worked with citizens, designers and architects to explore hopes and possibilities for their places asking about their wishes for their place. Reflective and immersive, the five films by Bash Art Creative, are now available online. Read more

21 May 2021 — Announcement

What if…?/Scotland opens at V&A Dundee on 22 May

What If...?/Scotland, photo by Alan Richardson, Pix-Ar
What If…?/Scotland, photo by Alan Richardson, Pix-Ar

People from across Scotland will showcase their hopes, dreams and ideas for their local areas in a post-pandemic world at Scotland’s design museum. Since the beginning of 2020, 30 people of all ages, from Annan, Edinburgh, Elgin, Dundee, Lerwick and Paisley- have worked with designers, architects and artists to reflect on the place they call home for an exhibition opening this week at V&A Dundee. Read more

18 May 2021 — Writing

One Year On: How has the pandemic changed the way we look at our places?

Citizens of Dundee working with Architects for What if…?/Scotland (Image by Lydia Smith)

In this blog Jim MacDonald, Chief Executive, Architecture and Design Scotland reflects on how our places have changed during a year of lockdown and adaptation. I think it’s fair to say, the Covid-19 pandemic has been the biggest shock to our systems in generations, and despite the vaccine and an easing of lockdown, it is set to have a lasting impact on our lives. Read more

3 May 2021 — Resource

What if…? / Resources

Alan Thomson Harbour Development Officer, Jordan McCrae, Collective Architecture, Nicola Atkinson, Beautiful Materials Design Studio and Calum McDougall worked together in early 2020 to add their hopes, wishes and ideas for Annan to What if…?/Scotland (Image by Bash Art Creative)

If you want to explore any of the themes in the What if...?/Scotland exhibition further, here is a list of relevant resources and tools. The Place Standard The Place Standard tool provides a simple framework to structure conversations about place. Read more