Gymnasium of the Panyaden School, Namprae, Thailand
Gymnasium of the Panyaden School, Namprae, Thailand, Chiangmai Life Architects, Markus Roselieb and Tosapon Sittiwong, © Markus Roselieb


16 Oct 2020
Due to the Corona regulation, the exhibition will be closed until further notice.
28 Feb 2021
ifa Gallery Stuttgart
Charlottenplatz 17
70173 Stuttgart

Contemporary architecture with plant fibers

Plants are remarkable organisms. They are the material basis of our lives and our culture, and are both beautiful and useful at the same time. They are local resources that keep growing, store carbon dioxide, and are completely biologically degradable. Building with plant fibres not only means that there is a perfect ecological balance, but also has positive social, economic, and cultural effects. Local know-how is preserved and further developed, jobs are created locally, and traditional ways of building are sourced and revitalised.

Architecture with plant fibres has high sensual and haptic qualities, and in terms of the selection criteria of the FIBRA Award also high aesthetic Quality. The FIBRA Award is given by amàco, the research and experimental centre for natural building materials in Villefontaine in France, and Dominique Gauzin-Müller. The international jury chaired by Anna Heringer, has selected 50 buildings where various materials have been used – bamboo, straw, reeds, willow, rattan palm, hemp, palm leaves, tree bark, and grasses. The uses of plant fibres include bearing and bridging structures, insulation, filtering, and dividing, veneers, and outfitting. The buildings presented here with pictures, texts, models, and prototypes are from 23 different countries and all continents. They are dwellings, schools, bridges, a construction yard and a wine cellar that together show the diversity of possible uses and the ecological, architectural, and aesthetic qualities of plant fibres in contemporary architecture. Building with plant fibres is innovative because it encourages us to think how we will want to build and to live in the future.

Production: Agence MUSEO und amàco
Curator: Dominique Gauzin-Müller
Scientific advisory board: Laetitia Fontaine, amàco, Prof. Guillaume Habert, ETH Zürich

On View in the Exhibition

In five short videos, the curator Dominique Gauzin-Müller gives insights into the exhibition: About unusual plant fibres like fungi used as building materials, locally grown straw and hemp working as insulation material and trees, as still-living plants, becoming architecture.

Programme focus 'Environment'

The ifa galleries' programme focus 'Environment' looks at traces left by colonisation and globalisation in our environment and encounters worldwide, local forms of resistance. The destruction of ecosystems, land grabbing, and the associated obliteration of cultural identities are addressed. Simultaneously, the strength of indigenous concepts of life and nature for shaping the future becomes apparent.

ifa Galleries

The ifa Galleries show the visual arts, architecture and design of a globalized world. They have been addressing contemporary art and current cultural and socio-political developments in Asia, Africa, Latin America and Eastern Europe since 1971 in Stuttgart and since 1991 in Berlin. Exhibition series afford insight into art scenes all over the world and reach across national borders. Conversations, lectures and discussions allow visitors direct contact with artists and curators.

ifa Gallery Berlin

ifa Gallery Stuttgart


ifa Gallery Stuttgart

Charlottenplatz 17
D-70173 Stuttgart

Telephone: +49.711.2225.173