© Benas Burdulis 2009-2017

Souvenir Pile

This installation is part of Legible Pompeii, an exhibit presented in the Monditalia pavillion at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale.

Souvenir Pile is a reconstitution of materials discovered in Pompeii, at the House of Sallust,
which was founded in the 4th Century BC, built out in 150 BC, uncovered in 1780, excavated in the early 1800s, bombed in World War II, and rebuilt in the 1970s.

This cycle of preservation and decay informs the concept of our installation.

Each polyurethane resin block preserves a substitute for one of the sixteen materials that make up the House, in proportion to its total composition today.
Visitors were each allowed to take one block as a souvenir, causing the installation to decay naturally over the course of the Biennale.

The Souvenir Pile was built up from 1000 custom-cast polyurethane resin blocks.
During the first two weeks of the Architecture Biennale, most of the bricks were taken away by the visitors as souvenirs.
Only the aluminum baseplates remained on the site of the installation, as the bricks have settled down in 1000 different places worldwide.

Authors: Lucia Allais & MOS (Michael Meredith, Hilary Sample)
Design: MOS (Michael Meredith, Hilary Sample, Griffin Ofiesh)
Fabrication: SWAL (Benas Burdulis, Emil Froege)
Research: Justin Fowler, Clelia Pozzi, Louise Decoppet, Frederik Bruggink
Graphic Design: Multimillion (Katie Andresen, Michael Seitz)