Norman Foster. Common Futures

5 October 2017–4 February 2018. Espacio Fundación Telefónica, Madrid, Spain

The exhibition 'Norman Foster. Common Futures', curated by Prof. Luis Fernández-Galiano, and sought to popularise the architect’s work and his vision of the future among a wide audience while revealing his sources of inspiration. The show, open from 6 October 2017 until 4 February 2018, focused on the continuities in Foster’s work and confirms how the future and the past can inspire the present.

Since his early works more than half a century ago, Norman Foster’s architecture has sought to employ technical expertise to anticipate the future and to overcome physical and social barriers. Inspired by both historical constructions and scientific progress, his projects reconcile tradition and modernity, urban intelligence and transformative capacity, aesthetic excellence and technological innovation.

On the occasion of the opening of the Norman Foster Foundation in Madrid, this exhibition—curated by Luis Fernández-Galiano, Senior Professor of Projects at the School of Architecture of the Polytechnic University of Madrid (ETSAM) and Director of Arquitectura Viva—documented twelve recent projects that enter into dialogue with similar proposals from previous decades to underline the continuity of his concerns and to bring to light the variety of his interests.

From involvement in heritage buildings to projects for living spaces on the Moon, Foster’s work recovers the memory of the past and anticipates the needs of the future while remaining firmly anchored among the demands and urgencies of the present. All of Foster’s proposals for new work and culture spaces, care for cancer patients, populations lacking infrastructures, sustainable urban development and raised paths for cyclists, stimulate the endeavour to make our cities more liveable. All with the dominant themes of social awareness, openness to change and innovation.

In addition, in the twelve sections of the exhibition, we could run through Foster’s ideas on different topics of social interest, following an itinerary which begins with a reflection on the past and ends with the future, taking in culture, work, well-being and sustainability. Each section presented a recent project together with another from his initial period, demonstrating the continuity of these features in his architecture, constantly focused on the prefiguration of a common future.

This exhibition was open to the public on the third floor of Espacio Fundación Telefónica (Madrid, Spain) until 4 February 2018.