The Venice Biennale of Arts is a great opportunity to think outside the box. This year 87 national pavilions can be found in Venice with the participation of Ghana, Madagascar and Pakistan!
Open until 24 November 2019, the pavilions are mainly located in the two main biennale venues: the Arsenale and the Giardini. But there are also others to be found around the city, and a couple that can only be reached by boat.
Here’s a couple of exhibitions and where to find them:
Ghana – Venue: Arsenale
This is the first Ghana Pavilion at the Biennale. The title was inspired by E.T. Mensah’s song on the eve of the independence of the new nation in 1957. The exhibition takes a look closer to legacies and trajectories of that freedom by six artists. Rooted both in Ghanaian culture and its diasporas, the pavilion is designed by Sir David Adjaye.
“Being able to show the diversity and creativity of Ghana on an international scale is an incredible achievement, and one which showcases the talent that we have to offer,” explained Adjaye.
Sun & Sea (Marina)
Lithuania – Venue: Edificio n° 96, Arsenale Marina Militare, Calle de la Celestia 2737F
Winner of the Golden Lion, the Lithuanian Pavilion transforms the interior of a historic quayside building within the Marina Militare complex into an artificially lit beach scene replete with sand and all the paraphernalia associated with seaside holidays. The artists Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, Vaiva Grainytė, and Lina Lapelytė present a durational opera performance on this dystopian installation that makes the imagination of any architect go deeper and deeper on thinking the way we design and use spaces.
Specially adapted for the 58th Venice Art Biennale, this is the first version of this piece in English. The original version of Sun & Sea (Marina) was produced by Neon Realism.
Neither nor: The challenge to the Labyrinth
Italy – Venue: Padiglione Italia, Tese delle Vergini, Arsenale
The title is suggested by Italo Calvino’s essay called La sfida al labirinto(The Challenge to the Labyrinth). Starting from the title itself, three Italian artists – Enrico David, Chiara Fumai, and Liliana Moro – choose a layout that is neither linear nor can be reduced to a set of tidy and predictable trajectories. Here you can enjoy a sense of dilated time and get lost in the space, a fascinating parallel to the host city of the biennial that allows for different discoveries on another scale, be it in art or the encounters that this exhibition generates.
The measurement of presence
The Netherlands – Venue: Giardini
The Measurement of Presence brings together influences from different backgrounds. Remy Jungerman and Iris Kensmil combine the inspiration they draw from 20th-century modernism, particularly Mondrian and De Stijl, the Russian avant-garde and artist stanley brouwn, with elements of other traditions and perspectives.
Iceland – Venue: Spazio Punch, Giudecca 800
This exhibition combines color, sound, and textures that immerse visitors in an audiovisual experience. Artist Hrafnhildur Arnardóttir / Shoplifter has created a series of distinct chambers, starting from primal opus, a dark passage of emanating volcanic earthy hues, activated by the sub terra sound of the icelandic cult metal band HAM.