“In shaping the future of the automobile, it is important to analyze trends and look beyond one’s own back yard,” says Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of AUDI AG. “The exchange with pioneers of another discipline – but one which has many parallels to automotive engineering – is proving to be very inspiring. In particular, because the architects come from very different cultural backgrounds.”
The architects visited Audi in Ingolstadt on May 26, when they talked shop with brand experts from Technical Development, Design, and Brand and Corporate Strategy. The discussions included topics of the future such as electrification and multimedia networking – and whether these technologies will change automotive design. During the subsequent workshop at the Design Museum in London, the contestants unveiled their concepts for the city of the future and progressed their ideas for aspects such as mobility, transformation and sustainability. They were assisted by the Audi Think Tank, the two Audi design chiefs, Wolfgang Egger and Stefan Sielaff, and Stylepark AG. The competition gives each participant the freedom to choose their own approach to the topic.
The following architectural firms are taking part in this visionary competition: Alison Brooks Architects (London), Bjarke Ingels Group (Copenhagen), Cloud9 (Barcelona), Diller Scofidio + Renfro (New York), J. Mayer H. Architects (Berlin) and Standardarchitecture (Beijing).
Stylepark AG in Frankfurt is supporting Audi as a partner in developing the concept and thematic focus of the award. “The Audi Urban Future Award is no ordinary competition,” explains Stylepark Director Christian Gärtner. “Despite the competition of ideas among the architectural firms, the aim is to develop perspectives collectively.” For him as well, the prospect of uniting representatives from two normally separate spheres in a dialogue holds a special appeal.
The results of the competition will be presented in an exhibition curated by Stylepark at the Scuola Grande della Misericordia on the occasion of the 12th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale. For the exhibition, each of the architects will produce an installation as well as models and images representing their concept of a transformed reality. The exhibition will be designed by Raumlaborberlin.
On the occasion of the exhibition opening on August 25, 2010, an international and interdisciplinary jury will bestow the Audi Urban Future Award. The architectural award with an endowment of 100,000 Euro is the most highly remunerated German architectural award. The members of the jury under the chairmanship of Saskia Sassen (London School of Economics, London / Columbia University, New York) are: Wolfgang Egger (AUDI AG, Ingolstadt), Massimiliano Fuksas (Studio Fuksas, Rome, Paris, Frankfurt, Shenzen), Christian Gärtner (Stylepark AG, Frankfurt), Andres Lepik (Museum of Modern Art, New York City), Ma Jun (Tongji University, Shanghai), Rahul Mehrotra (Rahul Mehrotra Associates, Mumbai/ / Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge), Fernando de Mello Franco (MMBB, São Paulo), Stefan Sielaff (AUDI AG, Ingolstadt) and Rupert Stadler (AUDI AG, Ingolstadt).
Audi will document the individual phases of the Audi Urban Future Award in three publications, as well as on the website www.audi-urban-future-award.com.