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The Board of La Biennale di Venezia met on Tuesday, December 14th and, upon the recommendation of President Roberto Cicutto, appointed Lesley Lokko as Director of the Architecture department, with the specific task of curating the 18th International Architecture Exhibition to be held in 2023. The Exhibition will be held from Saturday 20 May to Sunday 26 November, 2023.


Lesley Lokko (Ghana/Scotland) is an architectural academic, educator and best-selling novelist. She is the founder and director of the African Futures Institute, established in Accra, Ghana, in 2020 as a postgraduate school of architecture and public events platform. In 2015 she founded the Graduate School of Architecture at the University of Johannesburg. She has taught in the UK, in the US, Europe, Australia and Africa

She is the recipient of a number of awards for contributions to architectural education, among them: the RIBA Annie Spink Award for Excellence in Education 2020; the AR Ada Louise Huxtable Prize for Contributions to Architecture 2021. In 2019, she took up an appointment as Dean of Architecture at The Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, CCNY, from which she subsequently resigned in 2020 to start the African Futures Institute in her home country, Accra, Ghana.

“A new world order is emerging, with new centres of knowledge production and control”, stated Lesley Lokko. “New audiences are also emerging, hungry for different narratives, different tools and different languages of space, form, and place. After two of the most difficult and divisive years in living memory, architects have a unique opportunity to show the world what we do best: put forward ambitious and creative ideas that help us imagine a more equitable and optimistic future in common. Speaking to you from the world’s youngest continent, I would like to thank President Cicutto and the entire team of La Biennale di Venezia for this bold, brave choice”.