If you’re one of the largest design festivals in the world and you’re currently mired in controversy over the removal of your beloved director and the apparent political patronage in the hiring of a replacement by a national leader who is now on the outs, what do you do? If you’re the Venice Architecture Bienniale, you do the smart thing and grab a big name to come aboard as your next curator. So they have, with the announcement that starchitect David Chipperfield, fresh off his win of the Mies van der Rohe Award, will be taking on the roll for 2012. Building Design reports that, once everything’s been made official-official, that will leave the world-renowned architect only 8 months to “come up with a theme and curate the world’s largest architecture exhibition.” The site also notes that now that Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi appears to be on his way out, that the aforementioned appointment of food importer Giulio Malgara to replace longtime Biennale leader Paolo Baratta looks like it won’t be happening after all, leaving Baratta to “continue as director for at least another year.” All said, this is all shaping up to be one of the more interesting years for the Venice event in a while.
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