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Seon Jeon:Palace of DPRK

A parasitic pavilion feeding off the abundant circulation and visibility of the Venetian Rialto bridge, the pavilion serves to provide a glorious display of DPRK's living conditions and culture, whilst concurrently providing a home for Venice's homeless, addressing its pressing social needs of xenophobia, overpopulation and gentrification. Seon Jeon, a grand projection of the hermit kingdom, serves a rare glimpse into the hermit kingdom's housing grandeur and showcases its magnanimity in foreign aid tackling the Italian social crises.

Seon Jeon 3D Model
Seon Jeon 3D Model

'Freespace celebrates architecture's capacity to find additional and unexpected generosity in each project - even within the most private, defensive, exclusive or commercially restricted conditions...Freespace can be a space for opportunity, a democratic space...there is an exchange between people and building that happens.'

- Yvonne Farrell, Shelly Mcnamara

Curators of 2018 Venice Biennale

As part of the 2019 edition of the Venice Biennale, the project speculates and designs the elusive North Korean pavilion away from the traditional sites of the Giardini and Arsenale. Situated at the heart of the city centre, atop of historically and culturally significant icon, the palace is an unapologetic, loud projection of the North Korean power, serving as an external projection to tourists and locals of Venice. Whilst riding on the year's theme of democratic, free space and its ironic lack thereof in the Venetian islands, the pavilion stands above and mitigates the conditions of the packed central vessel. It send a strong message to its own citizens, Venetian locals and the rest of the world of the global, paramount status of DPRK.


Year 4, Semester 2

Technical University (TU) Eindhoven


Venezia, Rialto Bridge

Ponte di Rialto

45.437961, 12.335951


Biennale Pavilion


Sergio M. Figueiredo

Seon Jeon Plan and Sections
Seon Jeon Propaganda Posters
Venice Biennale Site Study
Venice Biennale Rialto Bridge Site Study
Venice Social Condition

Pavilion as Propaganda

Providing Insight into Powerful Hermit Kingdom

"Exhibitions have a long tradition in relation to architecture, be it as publicity tools, testing grounds, sites of confrontation and polemical debate, places of innovation, or ways of documenting history, constructing narratives or promoting new trends. The show was about bringing back the 'communicative aspect of architecture' create an urban and scenographic apparatus that could express a desire to return to collective space, the belief in the existence of a culture of place."

- Szacko, Exhibiting the Postmodern

North Korean Interaction Proxemics Study
Pavilion Proxemic Study
Pavilion Sketches
Pavilion Preliminary Sketches
Study Model Seon Jeon
Spatial Proxemics
Seon Jeon Spatial Proxemics
Rialto Bridge Spatial Proxemics
Study Model Seon Jeon
Linear Proxemics Study

Seon Jeon serves as a projection to multiple audiences back in Kim's land, in Venice, as well as global onlookers in the Venice Biennale. Mimicking the ideas of human proxemics and the ideas of dominance, the exhibition space and residential areas follow a linear transgression that plays with form, dimensions, visibility, accessibility — each factor alluding to Kim's and the North's interaction with one another and external parties.



The residential units, housing 28 dormitory units aim to provide affordable and accessible housing for locals amongst Venice's tight housing conditions. Simultaneously, the rigid typology of the blocks provide a glimpse into DPRK's socialist housing — once again proving that the North regime and strategies are superior in aiding the rest of the world.

Site Plan Seon Jeon
Seon Jeon 3D Model
Seon Jeon 3D Model
Seon Jeon 3D Site Model
Seon Jeon 3D Model
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