The largest festival of architecture, real estate and quality design, the Open House Slovenia (OHS), took place this year between 27 and 29 May. For the thirteenth time in a row, the festival opened the doors of good architecture and offered a diverse selection of new, renovated and other interesting buildings, which visitors could see for free under the expert guidance of architects, owners and users.
The theme of this year’s event was “ARCHITECTURE IN A NEW REALITY”. We wanted to encourage dialogue on the role and importance of architecture in times of great social and environmental change.
The times we live in are testing our civilization on very different levels. Our planet, society, economy, environment, culture and values are changing faster than people can get used to and respond to. Architecture has a significant impact on the quality of life of the individual and society as a whole. With the OHS festival, we want to emphasize its important role, which can only be realized in society with a deep understanding of its mission.
Architecture and people are connected in a common, limited space. In the light of our experience of the last few years, when we have felt an even greater lack of connection and cooperation, the idea of returning to the world before the pandemic is also being questioned. It seems that in the future we will have to plan and shape our world in a new, perhaps different way and in a broader context.
Architecture enables the solution of spatial problems and the design of spaces in new contexts. In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic a new opportunity has arisen: to create an architectural and social vision of space based on inclusion, quality and sustainability. New ways of living, working and teaching, new infrastructures, new technologies, meeting energy needs, CO2 emissions and sustainability, new partnerships… All this requires reflection and the creation of new responses.
As we await recovery, it would make sense to consider whether, instead of returning to life before the pandemic, we can discuss new solutions for a better and more sustainable living in the context of the new reality. Architecture and architects can help a lot. This is also pointed out by the European Commission’s “New European Bauhaus” initiative, aimed at accelerating the green transformation, which puts architecture at the forefront of the transition to a more sustainable economy and society.
The programme of the three-day architectural festival this year opened the doors of selected apartments and family houses, educational institutions, kindergartens and schools, business buildings and modern work spaces, cultural institutions, libraries and creative spaces for artists, as well as several tourist facilities and sports buildings.
Guided tours of the buildings offer visitors a personal experience in architecture and reveal the process of planning, constructing and using buildings. They also present possible answers and principles that make buildings more environmentally and user-friendly, reveal the important connection between man and the planet, and highlight the impact of technology and responsibility for the future.