Energy is currently in short supply. As varied as the reasons for this may be, one thing is certain: until now, the resources needed to generate energy had to be tapped at great expense. The sun, on the other hand, provides energy in abundance. Accordingly, hopes are high for solar design in the conversion to renewable energies.
To find out what a world powered by solar energy would look like, the world’s first Solar Biennale will take place from September to October 2022 in the Netherlands, with Rotterdam as the main venue. Created on the initiative of the Dutch solar designers Marjan van Aubel and Pauline van Dongen, the Biennale is intended to mark the beginning of a new international movement that advocates a living space in which solar energy occupies a central place. The aim is to present a future in which solar technology is integrated into a variety of surfaces, materials and objects. Participants from various disciplines will discuss how this can be realised in order to, as they say, “create a natural, meaningful and aesthetic everyday living environment and expand the one-sided technological and economic perspective of solar energy”. As a solar-powered world goes beyond scientific research and uniform solar cells, it is necessary to draw in cultural practices and site-specific energy needs and figure out how to concretely shape a post-fossil future.
How much energy do we have and need today? The Energy Show – Sun, Solar and Human Power”, a survey exhibition curated by Matylda Krzykowski, begins with this question and will be shown at Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam from 3 September 2022 to 5 March 2023. The chronologically structured show takes visitors on a journey through the history of the sun and illuminates its comprehensive subject from a technological and economic perspective. It presents numerous projects and aims to encourage people to think about their own “energy culture”. The further programme around a solar future consists of “Solar Lectures” and “Solar Labs”, various installations and the programme “Sun in the City”. Besides Rotterdam, events will also take place in other cities such as Eindhoven and Amsterdam. The final week of the Solar Biennale will take place during Dutch Design Week 2022 in Eindhoven, where a solar pavilion will be presented.
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