Monday, June 27, 2011

Venice Biennale: Collateral Events - Big Bambu

Photograph courtesy Hogan

Casa Artom: Wake Forest University - BIG Bambu. The Big Bambu installation by the Starn twins at Casa Artom on the Grand Canal was hosted by Stefano Tonchi, Alexia Niedzielski, Charlotte Casiraghi, Andrea Della Valle and Elizabeth von Guttman

 Photograph by Manfredi Bellati

Big Bambu.   The first exhibit of the identical twins Mike and Doug Starn’s Big Bambu series was on the roof of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York last year and was ranked the fourth in the world for total attendance of a contemporary art exhibition.   The Venice location, next door to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, was last used in the Biennale in the 1964 triumph of American Art when Rauschenberg won the Grand Prize.

Mike Starn states, 
'it is a sculpture, but not a static sculpture. It's something that exists through the presence of the people inside it. It’s an organism that we, and the crew of rock climbers, are just a part of-helping to move it along. We are constructing an ongoing tower, growth and change remain invariable, and they are a constant.' 

Doug Starn, adds, 
'We have a philosophy of chaotic interdependence; of how every complex thing grows and evolves (animal, social structures, etc…), 
and 'big bambĂș' actually physically presents it, it is philosophical engineering. Everything depends upon one another and the loads 
are distributed throughout; the interdependence is natural and fluid. There is not too much weight applied to any one thing.'

Andrea Della Valle and his son Leonardo

Afef Jnifen and Franca Sozzani 


  Gianluca Passi di Preposulo, Stefano Tonchi, JJ Martin and Elizabeth von Guttman

Alexia Niedzielski and Jean Pigozzi

Alain Elkann

Lucilla and Lucrezia Bonaccorsi di Reburdone

Photograph by Manfredi Bellati

Big Bambu.    The central aspect of the ongoing sculpture is a 50’ tall hollow tower of bamboo, with a trail spiraling up and reaching to a 20’ wide roof lounge. The work embodies a contradictory nature: it is always complete, yet remains unfinished, the sculpture is never at rest.  The Starns’ crew of eleven rock climbers continued to lash together bamboo, sustaining the spiral upwards until closing day.

Elizabeth von Guttman and Karla Otto

Fiona Swarovski

Marta Marzotto and Micol Sabbadini

Rula Jebreal

Carla Sozzani and Francois Berthoud

Edsel Williams

Courtney Love and Jefferson Hack arriving by water taxi

Big Bambu.   In addition to the 2,000 fresh cut bamboo stalks harvested from a farm in France, the current installation utilizes several fragments salvaged from last years exhibition at the Metropolitan, poles from both locations will be used again at stem cells in future projects or as 
stand alone sculptures, while others will be stored in Europe or the United States. 

Pin It