With its international competition, the Italian doorway specialist is seeking to support the architectural culture of entrance spaces by encouraging experimentation and promoting awareness.

The finalists of Oikos Venezia’s DoorScape contest will be exhibited in the Carlo Scarpa-designed spaces at Venice’s Querini Stampalia Foundation

The Oikos Venezia DoorScape contest puts entrance architecture centre stage | News

The finalists of Oikos Venezia’s DoorScape contest will be exhibited in the Carlo Scarpa-designed spaces at Venice’s Querini Stampalia Foundation

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Everyone knows the importance of making a good first impression. In architecture, the first opportunity to make people feel welcome and comfortable occurs at the front door. The entrance gives a sense of a building’s style and character, as well as the style and character of its occupants. It is also a place of cultural significance, where local traditions and customs are often expressed through unique functions, symbols and acts.


The Oikos DoorScape contest is dedicated to the theme ‘The Space Beyond the Threshold’ and invites participants to present a bold new vision for an area that is often overlooked


Italian door manufacturing brand Oikos Venezia describes the entrance as ‘a domestic place that connects and unites but at the same time separates and protects,’ adding that this important space 'crosses meanings that become cultural connotations of a tradition, a society or a historical moment.’ The company has been developing and manufacturing high-performance doors and entrance products at its facility in Gruaro near Venice since 1990. It is now established as an industry leader and is known for its ability to merge artisanal skills and industrial processes. Oikos products are technically advanced and artistic in their expression, with a level of quality that is compatible with luxury furnishings and interior design. 

Oikos Venezia specialises in contemporary entrance architecture, manufacturing innovative doors at its factory in Gruaro, Italy (top)

The Oikos Venezia DoorScape contest puts entrance architecture centre stage | News

Oikos Venezia specialises in contemporary entrance architecture, manufacturing innovative doors at its factory in Gruaro, Italy (top)

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  • Synua | The safety door for large dimensions, with vertical pivot operation and installation coplanar with the wall.

    Synua | The safety door for large dimensions, with vertical pivot operation and installation coplanar with the wall.

    Oikos – Architetture d’ingresso

Highlighting entrance architecture

This year, Oikos launched a competition aimed at highlighting the importance of domestic entrance architecture, in collaboration with Venetian cultural institution the Querini Stampalia Foundation and partner companies Adler, Iseo and Laminam. The DoorScape contest is dedicated to the theme ‘The Space Beyond the Threshold’ and invites participants to present a bold new vision for an area that is often overlooked. Architects, designers, engineers and students are encouraged to submit a proposal for a home entrance that fulfils the practical requirements of security and privacy, while exploring the cultural, functional and formal meanings of the space.


‘The entrance door is not simply a hole in the wall but rather a key element in an articulated sequence of areas that becomes a true experience for the senses’


‘A great architectural entrance space expresses its functionality to the maximum for the domestic interior and the public exterior, while also managing to make these two worlds dialogue harmoniously,’ suggests Oikos in its explanation of the contest theme. ‘The entrance door is not simply a hole in the wall but rather a key element in an articulated sequence of areas that becomes a true experience for the senses,’ the company added.

The competition’s jury will be headed by architect Michele De Lucchi of creative studio AMDL Circle (bottom) — and its finalists will be exhibited in the 16th-century Venetian palace which houses the Querini Stampalia Foundation (top)

The Oikos Venezia DoorScape contest puts entrance architecture centre stage | News

The competition’s jury will be headed by architect Michele De Lucchi of creative studio AMDL Circle (bottom) — and its finalists will be exhibited in the 16th-century Venetian palace which houses the Querini Stampalia Foundation (top)

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Function filled with cultural significance

Oikos believes in the cultural significance of entrance areas and the important customs often associated with welcoming people or respectfully entering another person’s home. Entrants to the DoorScape competition are expected to understand and reinforce the idea of the entrance space as an expression of local cultural traditions.

Functionality is crucial to the performance of doorways, and Oikos consistently develops innovative solutions to issues relating to security, safety, insulation and the prevention of any air or water ingress. The DoorScape competition seeks proposals that meet a variety of access-related needs through intelligent design and engineering. The projects should also combine technical ingenuity with aesthetic innovation, resulting in entrance spaces that consider the beauty and significance of doors and their relationship with the surrounding context.


Entrants to the DoorScape competition are expected to understand and reinforce the idea of the entrance space as an expression of local cultural traditions


The participants' works will be evaluated and receive awards upon decision by an international jury of six high-profile experts from several differentiated design fields. Renowned architect Michele De Lucchi of multidisciplinary creative studio AMDL Circle will be spearheading the group as president. The panel is looking for concepts that bring a new and different meaning to the entrance area. Designs should encourage renewed habits and ways of living that respond to contemporary issues relating to architecture, landscape, philosophy, history and sustainability.

Architectural masters including Carlo Scarpa (top) and Mario Botta (middle) have modernised parts of the palace, which also features site-specific contemporary artworks (bottom)

The Oikos Venezia DoorScape contest puts entrance architecture centre stage | News

Architectural masters including Carlo Scarpa (top) and Mario Botta (middle) have modernised parts of the palace, which also features site-specific contemporary artworks (bottom)

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DoorScape explores new ways of thinking

The winner of the contest will receive a 10,000€ cash prize and their proposal will be realised as an architectural model to be exhibited during the 18th International Architecture Exhibition taking place in 2023. The exhibition will be held at the Querini Stampalia Foundation in the rooms famously renovated by Italian architect Carlo Scarpa. The winning project will be presented alongside the rest of the ten finalists, which will also be published in a printed guide to the DoorScape exhibition. Entries to the competition can be submitted until 15 January 2023 via the DoorScape website, with the winner announced in March.


Architecture and design competitions such as the DoorScape contest provide an opportunity for participants to explore bold ideas without the pressure from a paying client or a live brief


Architecture and design competitions such as the DoorScape contest provide an opportunity for participants to explore bold ideas without the pressure from a paying client or a live brief. Oikos hopes the competition will inspire a meaningful examination of domestic entrances that touches on some of the key themes affecting society today. By exploring the future of the ‘Space Beyond the Threshold’, the outcomes exhibited next year may demonstrate entirely new ways of thinking about the architecture of spaces we use every day.

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