Monday, July 29, 2019

Venice: Not Only Biennale – Ca’ d’Oro – Dysfunctional

Dysfunctional - rethinks the boundaries of art

Ca’ d’Oro

On the occasion of the Venice Biennale, Carpenters Workshop Gallery, in partnership with Lombard Odier Group, presents Dyfunctional, an engaging exhibition of collectible art-design, until November 24 at the Giorgio Franchetti Gallery alla Ca’d’Oro on the Canal Grande. The exhibition presents works by established and emerging artists who intend to break the thin borders between art, architecture and design. The site-specific works fuse an extraordinary technique and a lively artistic-emotional expression.

Verhoeven Twins – Shape of Water Collection

Jeroen and Joep Verhoeven

The art installation is a mystical constellation of feather-light and supple impressions of bubbles whose iridescent surfaces reflect and refract light around the room. In a sense, the work closely mirrors Venice itself, appearing so fragile, yet possessing a steadfastness that exceeds expectations.

Verhoeven Twins – Moments of Happiness – 2019

Real Time XL The Artist by Maarten Baas is a series of 12-hour films, indicating time by erasing and re-drawing the hands minute by minute, which shows Baas, as an artist in his atelier where he crafts a narrative which addresses different aspects of passing time: getting older, moving forward and looking back.

Maarten Baas – Real Time XL The Artist by Maarten Baas – 2019

“Always been about the distillation of everything I’ve ever admired and wanted to combine…”
Rick Owens
talking about his furniture

With Double Bubble, Owens continues his quest for his brutalist idyll, utilizing natural plywood as a stoic, grand gesture, that allows the Orso leather upholstering to flourish. In this way it is a confluence of art and design principles, that allows the viewer to sit comfortably, or to forget function and observe it as an artistic object. In this setting it represents yet another confluence, between history and modernity. Its harsh brutalistic lines are contrasted with the ornate intricacies of the Ca’ d’Oro.

Rick Owens – Double Bubble – 2013

Photograph and copyright by Manfredi Bellati

“It is the endemic porosity and fragility of all boundaries and the intrinsic futility, or at least the irreparably temporary nature and the incurable revocability of any border definition. All boundaries are weak, fragile and porous.”
Zygmunt Bauman

Walls are raised to protect, divide, but also to define ourselves. Through them you can generate the narration of a society, history, or interaction of people with nature and with others. And today, more than ever, it is a relevant subject. The installation immediately establishes a connection with the important artistic heritage of Ca’ d’Oro, echoing the historicity of the building and evoking the ethereal past of the Serenissima with its splendour. At the same time, it leaves the visitor in a gravitational dimension: somewhere between a monumental clash and an intimate welcome. 

Vincenzo De Cotiis - Ode – 2019

Dubourg was struck by this room in the Ca’ d’Oro in which this work sits.   It is an open room and thus does not need a door to enter or to leave.  But it is a room in which works of intense suffering are displayed – Mantegna’s Saint Sebastian and Alessandro Vittoria’s Virgin – making it impossible to escape this misery.   Thus, he has created a threshold, that leads beyond the purgatory of human suffering.   Each individual terracotta tablet is a story, an experience, just like the tablets engraved with the first writing symbols that filled the first libraries of human memory. This clay is the original material of human structures, is suffused with our heritage.   The tablets reflect the pain of the Ca’ d’Oro works they face.

Vincent Dubourg - Door of Paradise – 2019

In his latest series, Renegade, instead of performing the act of either artist or designer, Joep Van Lieshout turns any object that he gets his hands on, even his own sculpture, into lamps, making every work as valuable or invaluable as the other.

Atelier Van Lieshout – Renegade – 2019

Studio Drift’s Fragile Future uses the fragility of dandelion seeds as a strength and poses its ability to make a meaningful connection with a complete different - human – system. Bringing Fragile Future and the masterwork of Andrea Mantegna together, is to Studio Drift, the starting point of bridging the gap between the moment where we started losing the connection and the moment we start seeing it again.

Studio Drift – Fragile Future - Chandelier Venice Mantegna – 2019

Virgil Abloh’s inspiration stemmed from using the current state of reality in Venice.  Using the foundation of being an architect and an engineer, Abloh was compelled to contextualize this conceptualization into a “sinking” installation which acts as a time stamp signifying a permanent object that recalls a temporary instance of the city of Venice.

Virgil Abloh – “Alaska Alaska” Acqua Alta – 2019

Australian artist Charles Trevelyan experiments with the interaction between form and texture.  His work can echo the underlying tenets of Venetian Gothic, the style in which the Ca’ d’Oro was built.

Charles Trevelyan – Circumspect – 2015

 "This is a work of art that chooses the spectators and watches them.”

Audience is a singular piece in movement, not a mobile shifting in the wind. Random International designed Audience according to the principle that linked the spectator to technology. Audience proposes a relationship with others, it reacts to the presence of people. The encounter is truly subjective; do objects really have a soul?

 Random International – Audience – 2008

Venice has always had particular resonance in my personal history and my imagination. It is the birthplace of great painters and glassblowing, but it is also a place emblematic of modern art thanks to the influence of Peggy Guggenheim and the artists who surrounded her. More than a functional object, this piece is intended in effect as sculpture-furniture, able to contend with the Byzantine or Renaissance works that one finds just about everywhere in Venice. Its golden patina of course reflects the Ca d’Oro - the Golden Palace - while its filigreed facade was inspired by Venice’s stained-glass windows and the gilded Burano lace that was used to create Carnival masks.”

Ingrid Donat – Klimt – 2017

Studio Job’s Sinking Ship is an allergy to the current political moment in Europe. It represents the fall of old Europe, and how this reflects the recent political sentiments in the time we are living in, with all the treats and instability, the pretentiousness and manipulation of the politics.  With this work, Studio Job reminds us from our own inevitable sinking – perhaps even into the Canal Grande that the Ca’ d’Oro faces.

Studio Job – Sinking Ship – 2015

Stuart Haygarth’s Tide Colour Cahndelier is created from plastic objects collected on the British coastline. Each element is different in shape and form, yet they collate to form one perfect sphere.  The sphere evokes the shape of the moon whose force created the tide that washed these items ashore.

Stuart Haygarth – Tide Colour – 2005

Photograph and copyright by Manfredi Bellati

Nacho Carbonell’s tree-like, organic sculptures transform the monumental courtyard of 15th century mosaics into a forest of light. Their shimmering texture reference the gilt and polychrome decorations which once adorned the palazzo’s facade and their cocoon metal mesh shapes echo the quatrefoils that decorate the windows of Ca’ d’Oro (‘the golden house’). Carbonell states that he would like the public to engage with the objects as much as they can by walking through them, passing underneath, exploring them as more than a collection of individual pieces.

 Nacho Carbonell – Inside a Forest Cloud Chandelier - 113-2019

In the courtyard of Ca’d’Oro, Lamy collaborates with a series of artists to create an immersive boxing installation. Hanging from cage like construction, boxing bags act as a visual metaphor, asking the question; What Are We Fighting For?. Exploring wider cultural, spiritual and social statements, she initiates a dialogue centered upon what we, in the present moment, need to face, challenge, celebrate in our lives.

Michele Lamy – Lamyland: What Are We Fighting For? – 2019

Wendell Castle’s Above within Beyond, one of his later works, is one of sensuous physicality. Cast in bronze, a rarity in Castle’s works, this is a homage to the love held by Baron Giorgio Franchetti, and Marin Contarini before him, for exceptional works made of the finest materials.

Wendell Castle – Above within Beyond – 2014

With his series Ocean Memories, Mathieu Lehanneur offers a surrealist and materialized vision of a sea frozen in its movement.  Like freeze-frame in three dimensions, the pieces capture the subtle reliefs of waves and currents, and embody the surface of the sea. He pays homage to Venice by working in green marbles and granites whose shades echo the nearby lagoon.

Mathieu Lehanneur – Ocean Memories Acqua Alta – 2019 - detail

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Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Venice: The 58th International Venice Art Biennale – PART TWO - May You Live in Interesting Times – Arsenale

The 58th International Venice Art Biennale 
May You Live in Interesting Times

The 58th International Venice Art Exhibition, titled May You Live In Interesting Times, until November 24, is curated by Ralph Rugoff and its title is a phrase of English invention that has long been mistakenly cited as an ancient Chinese curse that invokes periods of uncertainty, crisis and turmoil; "interesting times", exactly as the ones we live in today. All the 79 artists exhibit different works at the Giardini and the Arsenale, in order to highlight their artistic practice rather than a single work. It is also trying to highlight the fact that just as art has many levels, each artist’s practice has many different dimensions and aspects to it. The artists are trying to defy whatever categories and whatever conceptual boxes we might want to put them into.
Zanele Muholi – MaID III – Philadelphia – 2018

“Illegal combinations with rejected objects.”

Jimmie Durham is the recipient of this year’s Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement Award.  His work also includes elements of writing and performance, and his practice most often takes the form of sculptures in which diverse everyday items and natural materials are assembled into vivid forms, the process of production can be seen as an embodiment of the subversive attitude that suffuses his works. Here each sculpture, fashioned from combinations of furniture parts, slick industrial materials or used clothes, approximates the scale of the titular animal, yet the resulting forms are not portraits of the beings, but rather poetic entanglements that challenge the traditional Enlightenment notion of the separation between humans and nature.

Jimmie Durham – Musk Ox – 2017

Tavares Strachan – Robert Henry Lawrence Jr. – 2018

 Gabriel Rico – Seccion Aurea – 2017

  Shilpa Gupta – For, in your tongue, I cannot fit – 2017-2018

Henry Taylor – Untitled – 2019

 Arthur Jafa – Big Wheel – series – My Little Buddha – 2018

Photograph and copyright Manfredi Bellati

 Arthur Jafa


Nabuqi – Destination – 2018

 Martine Gutierrez – Body En Thrall – series – 2018

Yin Xiuzhen – Nowhere to Land – 2012

 Korakrit Arunanondchai with Alex Gvojic  
 No history in a room filled with people with funny names 5 – 2018 

 Mari Katayama – Dolls and Boxes #1990-2019

Anthony Hernandez

Rosemarie Trockel – One Eye too Many – 2019

Nicole Eisenman

Cameron Jamie – Smiling Disease – 2019

Rula Halawani – Untitled # 3 - from the series - The Wall at Night - 2005 

Michael Armitage

 Gaurie Gill – Becoming – 2003 – ongoing

Liu Wei – Microworld – 2018

Alex Da Corte – Rubber Pencil Devil – 2019

Augustas Serapinas – Chair for the Invigilator – brown – 2019

Augustas Serapinas

Anthea Hamilton – The New Life – 2019

Neil Beloufa - We only get the love we think we deserve – 2019

Zana Kadyrova – Market – 2017 – ongoing

Slavs and Tatars

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