Cronocaos, OMA’s exhibition on preservation, opens in New York.

Opening in New Museum. [NYC] 5/7/2011 - 6/5/2011
metalocus, JOSÉ JUAN BARBA
Three weeks ago we told you about Initiative hitting New York this weekend for the New Museum’s Festival of Ideas. The Festival officially kicks off tonight with a keynote speech by OMA founder Rem Koolhaas.

Cronocaos, OMA's exhibition on the increasingly urgent topic of preservation in architecture and urbanism, opens to the press today in New York. First shown at the 2010 Venice Architecture Biennale and now occupying the New Museum's new gallery space – a former restaurant supply store on the Bowery – Cronocaos examines the growing "empire" of preservation and its consequences for the way we build, demolish, and remember.

Around 12 percent of the planet now falls under various regimes of natural and cultural preservation. "Through our respect for the past, heritage is becoming more and more the dominant metaphor for our lives today – a situation we call Cronocaos," OMA founding partner Rem Koolhaas says. "We are trying to find what the future of our memory will look like."

Cronocaos – featuring new material in its New York edition – includes historic objects and unseen OMA archival material; analysis of the rapid growth of preserved urban and natural territories; and a timeline of OMA projects that have confronted the issue of preservation over 35 years of practice, including the 2001 proposed extension to the Whitney Museum in New York and the curatorial masterplan for the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia. Each project within the OMA timeline will take the form of a “postcard” for visitors to peel off the wall and take home.

The exhibition takes place in the New Museum's new space, a former restaurant supply store next door to the main museum. Reflecting the exhibition’s themes, one side of the space will be "preserved" as it was while inhabited by the store; the other will be renovated into typical white cube museum space.

Cronocaos will open to the public today and remain on view through June 5. The exhibition is part of the Festival of Ideas for the New City, taking place in venues across Manhattan from May 4–8.


New Museum, 235 Bowery, New York, NY 10002

04/19/2011 article in METALOCUS.
Cronocaos. NYC. OMA.
Cronocaos. NYC. OMA.
Cronocaos. NYC. OMA.
Cronocaos. NYC. OMA.
Cronocaos. NYC. OMA.
Cronocaos. NYC. OMA.

Rem Koolhaas was born in Rotterdam in 1944. He began his career as a journalist, working for the Haagse Post, and as a set-designer in the Netherlands and Hollywood. He beganHe frequented the Architectural Association School in London and studied with Oswald Mathias Ungers at Cornell University. In 1978, he wrote Delirious New York: a retroactive manifesto for Manhattan, which has become a classic of contemporary architectural theory. In 1975 – together with Elia and Zoe Zenghelis and Madelon Vriesendorp – he founded OMA (Office for Metropolitan Architecture). The most important works by Koolhaas and OMA, from its foundation until the mid-1990s, include the Netherlands Dance Theatre at The Hague, the Nexus Housing at Fukuoka in Japan, the Kunsthal in Rotterdam, the Grand Palais of Euralille and Lille, the Villa dall’Ava, the Très Grande Bibliothèque, the Jussieu library in Paris, the ZKM in Karlsruhe and the Seattle Public Library.

Together with Koolhaas’s reflections on contemporary society, these buildings appear in his second book, S,M,L,XL (1995), a volume of 1376 pages written as though it were a “novel about architecture”. Published in collaboration with the Canadian graphic designer, Bruce Mau, the book contains essays, manifestos, cartoons and travel diaries.

In 2005, with Mark Wigley and Ole Bouman, he was the founder to the prestigious Volume magazine, the result of a collaboration with Archis (Amsterdam), AMO and C-lab (Columbia University NY).

Koolhaas is professor at Harvard University, where he directs The Project on the City, a research programme on changes in urban conditions around the world. This programme has conducted research on the delta of the Pearl River in China (entitled Great Leap Forward) and on consumer society (The Harvard Design School Guide to Shopping). Taschen Verlag has published the results.

Among the awards he has won in recent years, we mention here the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize (2000), the Praemium Imperiale (2003), the Royal Gold Medal (2004) and the Mies Van Der Rohe prize (2005). In 2008, Time mentioned him among the 100 most influential people of the planet.

Act.> : 14/02/2014



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