[-empyre-] Call for e-action | Venice Biennale |Manifesto

Isak Berbic isakberbic at yahoo.com
Tue Jun 14 09:29:55 EST 2011

The Venice Biennale national pavilion structure, much like the olympic games, has an old world tone where proud nations showcase their talents and compete for prestige with their coat of arms. 

Of course there is a pleasure to being able to walk from country to country. There is also a decentralization of a curatorial direction (to Venice Biennale as a whole). And yes, there is also most of the developing world without pavilions. 

I find it fascinating how the national pavilion can at times outlive the nation. A good example is the Czechoslovakian pavilion where they share the space even after national separation. After all, Giardini is very expensive real estate. 

Take a look at Roman Ondak at the 53rd Venice Biennale 

Here is an image of the front gate

Whereas for the 54th Venice Biennale I noticed that press releases for Dominik Lang’s The Sleeping City is listed to be located at the The Pavilion of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic.

The (old) Yugoslavian pavilion which at one point was a pavilion representing a federation of 6 republics today represents Serbia. In 2005 there was a sign made up of black steel letters displaying (renaming it) "Serbia and Montenegro", superimposed over the "Jugoslavia" brickwork underneath. With independence I suppose countries forfeit not only worldwide properties such as national holdings and embassies - but exhibition wall space as well. From looking up images today it appears that sign is now gone; Jugoslavia remains embedded into the architecture, and "Serbia" is simply written in white on the side of the building. 



Then there are peoples without nations or proper worldly documents. These peoples sometimes find funding to organize auxiliary pavilions or "Eventi Collaterali".
In 2007 "Paradise Lost" was the first Roma pavilion representing one of the largest european (and Italian) minorities. Artists of Roma background were invited from all over the world. 

Robert Storr selected Emily Jacir to participate in the 52nd Venice Biennale within the Arsenale. The following Biennale "Palestine ℅ Venice" was the first Palestinian representation.

Sislej Xhafa, a young artist from Kosovo dribbled a football around the exhibition grounds in Venice, sardonically looking for his pavilion. Dribbling the ball outside of the court is what many artists on the periphery have to do.

From: Tamiko Thiel <tamiko at alum.mit.edu>
To: empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
Sent: Saturday, June 11, 2011 1:57 PM
Subject: Re: [-empyre-] Call for e-action | Venice Biennale |Manifesto


I was in Venice on May 31st during the vaporetto strike, but did not see or hear of any picketing in the city that transmitted a wider political message. Since strikes of all sorts are very common in Italy it came across as more of the same, rather than as an adept blow at the moneyed art world.

The "Stateless Immigrant's Pavilion" is a great idea - I wonder if each of them is paying 20 Euros/day to get into the Giardini for 10 days?

The national pavilions have always also exhibited non-citizens who are however long-term residents - for instance Nam June Paik in the German Pavilion in 1993.

Yours, Tamiko Thiel

-- -------------------------------------------------------------
Tamiko Thiel
tamiko at alum.mit.edu

Venice Biennial 2011 - Manifest.AR uninvited AR Infiltration

"Shades of Absence" - AR artwork for Venice Biennial 2011
empyre forum
empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <https://mail.cofa.unsw.edu.au/pipermail/empyre/attachments/20110613/8ccd7d5c/attachment.html>

More information about the empyre mailing list