Installation Competition

The winner of TAB 2022 Installation Competition is Burlasite by Simulaa with Natalie Alima (Australia). Beyond the everyday concerns of maintenance and longevity, the winning team challenges and inverts the prevailing view that a decayed building is an obsolete one – by creating a structure that allows for the passing of time to be expressed. Burlasite utilizes algorithmic processes that enable biological transformations of material growth and decay to rewire its foundations. Composed of industrial timber waste, the robotically fabricated formwork is inoculated with mushroom fibers that over time, consume and overwrite it with a hardened mycelial structure. This generates a tension between the natural and artificial, heightening the installation’s expression of eroding and emerging form.

Burlasite dissects the archetypal ‘Hut’ utilising algorithmic processes that enable biological transformations of material growth and decay to rewire its foundations. Composed of industrial timber waste, the robotically fabricated formwork is inoculated with mushroom fibres that over time, consume and overwrite it with a hardened mycelial structure. Generating a tension between the natural and artificial, heightening the installation’s expression of eroding and emerging form.

Project investigates timber as a sculpted, textured and imprecise material, by assigning value to the waste and by-product (off cuts and saw dust) that is commonly discarded from machined timber milling. It is proposed that this waste material from the local timber industry will be harvested and combined with a biodegradable polymer, forming the base form of the installation; which will be shaped into a series of smaller components, produced using a large, custom 3-axis machine assembly. 

The 3D-printed timber structure is then inoculated with mycelia to consume and take over, slowly replacing it over time, until the sawdust formwork has been consumed, with only the hardened structural mycelia remaining. This is analogous to the process by which bio-scaffolds are utilised in medicine to promote the growth of human tissue with an artificially introduced structure. 

Through this process, Burlasite seeks to heighten this state of flux, expressed in the object’s material decay that is in tension between emerging and eroding form.

On a podium stand are second prize winners IHEARTBLOB (UK) with their project Fungible/ Non-Fungible.

12 teams to enter the 2nd stage of the competition

  • Adrien Rigobello, Tom Svilans, Phil Ayers
  • Andy Watts, Alicia Nahmad Vazquez
  • Anna Jankovic, Andre Bonnice, Bryn Murrell, Tommaso Nervegna-Reed (Simulaa) and Natalie Alima
  • Barry Wark, Richard Beckett, Levent Ozruh, Jan Contala, Phillip Schwaderer
  • Elif Erdine, Milad Showkatbakhsh, Nicolo Bencini (EmTech) and Buro Happold
  • Ezio Blasetti, Danielle Willems
  • Francesco Lipari, Arturo Tedeschi
  • Aleksandra Belitskaja, Benjamin James and Shaun Mccallum (IHEARTBLOB)
  • Joseph Choma, Jefferson Ellinger, Wesam Al Asali
  • Katya Bryskina, Dmitry Morozov
  • Roberto Naboni, Riccardo La Magna, Aljaz Kramberger, Anija Kunić, Luca Breseghello, Alessandro Zomparelli
  • Studio Kinc, Kory Bieg, Igor Siddiqui, Nerea Feliz, Clay Odom


The 2022 TAB installation brief operates in parallel to the Edible theme of Lydia Kallipoliti, Areti Markopoulou and Ivan Sergejev’s Curatorial exhibition. The installation competition is interested in how the Slow Food movement, a countercultural response to industrialized food production, can serve as an effective departure point for reimagining how and what we build. 

As a counterpoint to the prevailing trends towards high-speed industrialized construction, the curators invite proposals that explore the relationship between technology and slowness. Slowness is a useful framework for thinking about design and construction in a world of finite physical resources and exponentially increasing computational capacity. New technologies could, for instance, enable builders to better utilize local materials and extend the capacity of traditional craftsmanship, reducing the need for global production and transportation chains or standardized building components. 

The 2022 TAB installation calls for proposals that take a long, romantic, and human centric view towards construction technology, demonstrating designs and processes that extend and expand learning and mastery, traditional craftsmanship and analogue fabrication, repurposing and reuse of local materials, human invention and improvisation, environmental adaptation and responsiveness, wonderment, and delight. 

The installation competition seeks proposals for Slowbuildings that explore how the same technologies that are facilitating faster industrialized construction can be slowed to nourish local craftsmanship, better utilize available materials, respond to environments over long time scales and enhance bespoke design expression. Could robotic automation and rapidly emerging technologies of machine learning, mixed reality environments, high fidelity spatial capture and 3D printing allow Slowbuilding to become an alternative paradigm for architectural production, one that is optimized for learning, adaptation, collaboration and delight rather than capital gain and project delivery time?


Gwyllim Jahn, Cameron Newnham, Soomeen Hahm Design, Igor Pantic
TAB 2019 Installation Competition winners


Roland Snooks
architect and founder of Kokkugia, Associate Professor at RMIT, Australia

Kathrin Dörfler
architect and founder of dorfundrust, Professor at TU Munich, Germany

Peeter Pere
architect and founder of Peeter Pere Arhitektid, Estonia


Gwyllim Jahn, Cameron Newnham, Soomeen Hahm, Igor Pantic
Installation Competition Curators TAB 2022

Lydia Kallipoliti and Areti Markopoulou
Head Curators TAB 2022

Eve Arpo
Tallinn Architecture Biennale Producer, Estonian Centre for Architecture

Sille Pihlak
co-founder of PART, TAB 2017 Installation Programme curator


The installation should work independently of the larger whole, as a functional and active public space in front of the Museum of Estonian Architecture. Just as previous editions of TAB, the installation itself should be open to the surroundings and attract visitors the museum. The competition is not looking for proposals for small houses or cabins, but public installations. The installation needs to be climate resistant as it should stay on the site until 2024, a period of two years. Architects are encouraged to think about timber as innovative construction material, possibly in combination with other materials. The winning team will construct their own design for the opening of TAB 2022.


The site for the Installation Competition is the area in front of the Museum of Estonian Architecture, housed in the Rotermann Salt Storage – one of Tallinn’s most outstanding examples of industrial architecture. The area in front of the museum is a lively pedestrian street for commuters between harbor and city center. East to west it is a green island on one of the busiest streets in the city centre, being one of the main connections between the two sides of the city.


17th March 2021:
competition announced

22nd April 2021:
stage 1 submission deadline, 12:00 PM Estonian Time

June 2021:
announcement of the chosen teams

10th September 2021:
Stage 2 submission deadline, 12:00 PM Estonian Time

end of September 2021:
the winner announced

7th September 2022:
Opening of TAB 2022 and the installation


The competition is directed towards emerging architectural talent and is open to all graduated architects or teams composed of at least one architect. The competition is not open to students. The participants don’t have to be licensed.


The TAB 2022 Installation Programme Competition is organised by the Estonian Centre for Architecture.


All projects are invited to collaborate with local timber industry. The TAB installation works within a budget of 15 000 euro that covers both design and build. The winning team will be assisted by the Estonian Centre for Architecture to help and advice with production.


1st prize
15 000 € budget for construction + symposium participation + exhibition participation + published in TAB 2022 book + TAB 2022 pass

2nd and 3rd prize
TAB 2022 exhibition participation + published in TAB 2022 book + TAB 2022 PASS

The winner and the II stage participants will be exhibited at TAB Installation Programme exhibition.


Download competition materials

TAB 2022 Installation Competition will be launched on April 8th, 2021 at 12.00 PM (UTC/GMT+2) on an interactive digital television broadcast platform MulticityTV.

The show “Tales of Tomorrow’s Architecture”, devised to present the TAB 2022 Installation Competition will include guests such as Roland Snooks (Australia), Lina Ghotmeh (France), Peter Sovetnikov (Russia), Marco Casagrande (Finland), Gilles Retsin (UK), Gwyllim Jahn (Australia) and Tomomi Hayashi (Estonia).

The community of International architects and a wider audience are welcomed to participate in the interactive, live web-show on April 8th, 2021, beginning at 12:00 (UTC/GMT+2). The transmission will be delivered on