Dancing Before the Moon talks about daily rituals to overcome uprooting from the lands of origin. To promote an extended notion of architecture in which experimentation, collaboration, equity are part of the country's planning

The exhibition project of the Great Britain Pavilion at the 2023 Biennale is based on methods and processes of collective construction, in order to avoid the exploitation of people and the planet.

See also: Architecture Biennale 2023: information, calendar and updates

The architecture of the diaspora

The exhibition addresses the theme of diaspora architecture through the pre-colonial lens, celebrating its architectural varieties, respecting the practices and material knowledge of those communities.

"By bringing their value to the fore at a time of growing social polarization and ecological degradation – explain the curators - we intend to amplify previously neglected voices and perspectives in British architecture.

Our pavilion will take the architectural canon back into consideration through a joyful celebration of pluralism".

The exhibition takes stock of diasporic craftsmanship and material cultures as a contribution to a more sustainable future for British architecture, built on principles of care and equity with respect to the extraction and exploitation of materials.

Collective construction activities will be launched in the spaces of the pavilion with the collaboration and supervision of architects, researchers and makers.

The curators

  • Jayden Ali is founding director of the interdisciplinary practice JA Projects and Senior Lecturer at Central Saint Martins;
  • Joseph Henry is a designer and urban planner, co-founder of the Sound Advice platform and part of the Culture and Creative Industries Team at the Greater London Authority;
  • Meneesha Kellay is the Curator of the Contemporary Program at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V & A);
    Sumitra Upham is a curator and writer, currently Head of Public Programs at the Crafts Council.

The history of the British Pavilion

The British pavilion in Venice has been commissioned by the British Council since 1937. The exhibitions, together with the Venice Fellowships initiative introduced in 2016, contribute to making the pavilion a platform for discussion on issues of contemporary art and architecture.

British Pavilion at the 2023 Biennale, in brief

• Title: Dancing Before the Moon
• Commissioner: Sevra Davis, Director of Architecture Design Fashion at the British Council
• Curators: Jayden Ali, Joseph Henry, Meneesha Kellay and Sumitra Upham.
• Exhibitors: Yussef Agbo-Ola, Jayden Ali, Mac Collins, Shawanda Corbett, Madhav Kidao, Sandra Poulson