Philipp Valente, Architecture, 2020

Lives in Dortmund (DE)

Philipp Valente completed his master’s degree in architecture with distinction at the Technischen Universität München in 2019 and founded the architectural practice Less Plus in Dortmund the same year. He has worked with such renowned architecture offices as Nikken Sekkei (Tokyo, Japan), RCR Arquitectes (Olot, Spain), and Peter Haimerl. Architecture (Munich, Germany).
Philipp Valente was awarded the Hans Döllgast Prize, the JSPS Prize, and the Baumeister Academy scholarship, and has done research on Japanese aesthetics with Prof. Kengo Kuma at the University of Tokyo.

What Matters

Work Presentation 2022

“What Matters” was the question andtatement of 2022 presentation of works by the JUNGE AKADEMIE, the interdisciplinary and international artist-in-residence programme of the Akademie der Künste. In an exhibition and a multifaceted programme including screenings, concerts and readings, 29 fellows from all of the Akademie’s art sections presented sound and video installations, photographs, sculptures, paintings and performances they developed during their studio residencies in the Hansaviertel in Berlin and at Villa Serpentara in Olevano, Italy.

“What Matters” is not to be understood as the title of a thematic exhibition but rather indicates the diversity of questions, perspectives and realities that are interlaced in an artist residency, while emphasising their urgency. The exhibition focused on the artists’ individual approaches that encompass a broad spectrum of themes: from questions about the transformation of societies and their expression in relation to the urban space and landscape, to interrelations between the individual and social systems such as state, religion and the economy, to reflections on body images and conceptions of history, personal archives and the intertwining of nature, technology and culture.

What matters is artistic testimony, poetic resistance and the imagining of sustainable futures in the face of global tipping points – whether climatic or political in nature. Two years into the pandemic and the associated restrictions, “What Matters” was the most comprehensive presentation of works to date by the JUNGE AKADEMIE.

To quote one of the fellows: “What matters? Make them see…”



In the distance, blast furnaces split the horizon.
Pipelines and bridges form a dense net.
Struts made of steel and rust are omnipresent.
Like the skeletons of huge prehistoric creatures,
the structural legacies of industrialisation shape the Ruhr area.

Despite their high occurrence, there is seldom a direct examination of the structures. For the residents, the structures are relics of a bygone era, when the Ruhr area stood for sweat, dirt and work. As a result, these identity-creating elements are increasingly disappearing and are only tolerated in places consciously intended to be associated with the romantic notion of industrial culture.

Architectural structures rarely provoke a reaction in the region, where an international style following the Bauhaus tradition continues to be built instead. Simple cubes and white façades are juxtaposed with the industrial ruins.