Rūta Leitanaitė is an architecture critic, writer and curator. She works as a creative director at the Architects Association of Lithuania, and also as the editor-in-chief of the official website of the AAL, and curates various architectural events (exhibitions, conferences, workshops, and competitions). Additionally, she contributes to several Lithuanian and international magazines and books on architecture.
Upon entering the pure, empty space, one is submerged unexpectedly into a mysterious ambience, which provides a striking and empirical way to experience the architecture: through sound. Super-sensory alterations of the floor and wall surfaces and reconstruction of the ventilation system turned the pavilion into a sound sculpture, humming with repetitive, hypnotizing, weird noises. The live soundtrack comprises amplified reverberating sounds of the pavilion itself and those of the neighbouring pavilions located in the same building at Giardini. While inviting a rethinking of the balance between listening and being heard, the Polish pavilion reveals architecture as an environment that generates sound, a system that creates a sonic scenario of incoming and surrounding noises.
Giving a thrilling peek at fragments of history from previously secret Soviet towns, built during the Cold War in order to develop the Russian military, space, and technological industries, the exhibition continues with the no less ambitious, top-down project of Skolkovo's reconstruction. The precariously grand ideas to turn the town into a centre for science and technology, visualized by the big names of architecture, are represented using an appealing digital ornament that provides an interactive way to explore the content of the exhibition by navigating through the projects using QR Code readers.
The urban space is an object of social action and simultaneously a platform for social action. In this case, a protest against capitalism, in favor of direct democracy. The real story about the citizens' struggle for the re-appropriation of the city and the creation of a network of civic initiatives is told through maps, models and a series of documentaries, displayed on the multilayered array of sheer sheets of fabric hung from the ceiling, inviting the visitor to wander between them.