“Shifting Ground (Beyond National Architecture)” is the exhibition at the Irish Pavilion at the 13th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale. The centerpiece of the pavilion is an interactive wooden seesaw—designed by Dublin firm Heneghan Peng Architects—a fixture that, The Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland reports, prompted Irish Ambassador to Italy Patrick Hennessy to proclaim the showcase “the happiest pavilion at the biennale.” The design of the seesaw, officially known here as a Nilometre, was inspired by an Ancient Egyptian rod that was used to measure the water level of the Nile river. In the Irish Pavilion, the Nilometre is set at Venice’s high-water mark, and visitors are invited to sit of either end in an effort to balance their weight and make the Nilometre level. One of the most interactive of the exhibitions on display, “Shifting Ground” will be open to the public until Nov. 25.
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