SEAM Space Yangon

20 November – 24 November 2019

Synthesis of Myanmar Modernity

The beginning of modern architecture in Myanmar is closely linked to the achievement of independence in 1948. The research Project Synthesis of Myanmar Modernity investigates how modernization transformed the built environment of Myanmar. Questioning architecture and urban planning in Myanmar had fallen silent for decades. Now, after the newly forming of democracy, the interest in modern architecture is thriving again. A young generation of architects and scholars, as well as the general public, are asking about the historical significance and current value of the architectural heritage of this period. But in a multi-ethnic society, with a population that speaks hundreds of different dialects, the renegotiation of modern architecture and its values is a great challenge. Further the interactions with religion, politics and technology must be taken into account, as well as relating developments in the Southeast Asian region.

The exhibition Synthesis of Myanmar Modernity critically, creatively and collectively analyses how modernity was translated into an architectural language in Myanmar. Drawings, historical and contemporary images, examine modernist public buildings such as Tripitaka Library, Martyr’s Mausoleum or Yangon Regional Parliament. The work “Irene”, edited by Swiss photographer Lukas Birk, gives a more private view on modern living in the 1960s and 70s through a collection of photos from this period. The filmmaker Kriz Chan Nyin captured video interviews with eminent artists and architects like U Shwe, U Sun Oo, or U Win Phae.

Presentations by international curators, artists, architects and scholars on architecture modernities in Phnom Penh, Jakarta, Singapore and their intertwining with political, social and cultural narrations contextualize the view on Myanmar.

Synthesis of Myanmar Modernity is curated by Pwint, Professor, Deputy Head of Department of Architecture – Yangon Technological University, and Win Thant Win Shwin, Architect & Planner – Mandala art & design.

20 November 2019, 5:30 pm Exhibition opening

We cordially invite you to the reception on the occasion of the opening of the programme Synthesis of Myanmar Modernity.

The artistic directors and the curators from Myanmar, Jakarta and Phnom Penh will be present.

Drinks and snacks will be served.

Looking forward to seeing you!

Location:
Goethe Institute Myanmar, 1st floor,
Corner of Kabar Aye Pagoda Road und Nat Mauk Street, Bahan Township, Yangon

21 November - 24 November 2019 Pop-up exhibition

The exhibition Synthesis of Myanmar Modernity critically, creatively and collectively analyses how modernity was translated into an architectural language in Myanmar. Drawings, historical and contemporary images, examine modernist public buildings such as Tripitaka Library, Martyr’s Mausoleum or Yangon Regional Parliament. The work “Irene”, edited by Swiss photographer Lukas Birk, gives a more private view on modern living in the 1960s and 70s through a collection of photos from this period. The filmmaker Kriz Chan Nyin captured video interviews with eminent artists and architects like U Shwe, U Sun Oo, or U Win Phae.

Presentations by international curators, artists, architects and scholars on architecture modernities in Phnom Penh, Jakarta, Singapore and their intertwining with political, social and cultural narrations contextualize the view on Myanmar.

Location:
Goethe Institute Myanmar, 1st floor,
Corner of Kabar Aye Pagoda Road und Nat Mauk Street, Bahan Township, Yangon

Opening hours:
10 pm-6 pm

21 November 2019 Lecture day

The lecture day discusses the development of modern architecture in Yangon and it’s connection to the arts. Contributions from Jakarta and Phnom Penh will give an insight into Modernism in Indonesia and Cambodia. You are cordially invited to join the discussion!

Programme

1:30 pm: Registration
2:00 pm: Beginning
3:30 – 4:00pm pm: Coffee break and snacks
6:00 pm: End of lecture day

Talks and lectures by:

U Sun Oo, architect, Yangon, Myanmar

U Shwe, architect, Yangon, Myanmar

U Win Phae, artist, director, writer, Yangon, Myanmar

Sereypagna Pen, architect and urban researcher, Phnom Penh, Cambodia:
Cambodia’s Modern Movement from 1918 to 1970

Setiadi Sopandi, architect, curator, architectural scholar, Bogor, Indonesia:
An introduction to modern architecture in Indonesia

Ben Bansal, economic consultant, Tokyo, Japan:
Benjamin Polk and Raglan Squire – two architects in post-independence Myanmar

The talks are followed by a panel discussion

Admission is free.
A pre-registration is not necessary.

Location:
Goethe Institute Myanmar, Auditorium,
Corner of Kabar Aye Pagoda Road und Nat Mauk Street, Bahan Township, Yangon

22 November 2019 Architecture tour

The tour will highlight the development of modern architecture in Yangon through some exemplary buildings.

8:15 pm: Registration
8:30 pm: Start
12:00 pm – 13:00 pm: Lunch
4:00 pm: End of tour

Featured buildings:
– Kaba Aye Pagoda Complex and Buddhist Library
– University of Medicine 1 (former Rangoon College of Engineering)
– Martyr’s Mausoleum
– Yangon Regional Parliament
– Yangon University of Technology

The tour will be by invitation only.