Biennale | Biennale Arte 2019 titled May You Live In Interesting Times 

Paolo Baratta, and the curator of the 58th International Art Exhibition, Ralph Rugoff. Photo Biennale di Venezia

The 58th International Art Exhibition is curated by Ralph Rugoff and will be open to the public from 11 May to 24 Novembre 2019.

Ralph Rugoff, curator of the biennale Artehas declared:

«May You Live in Interesting Times will no doubt include artworks that reflect upon precarious aspects of existence today, including different threats to key traditions, institutions and relationships of the “post-war order.” But let us acknowledge at the outset that art does not exercise its forces in the domain of politics. Art cannot stem the rise of nationalist movements and authoritarian governments in different parts of the world, for instance, nor can it alleviate the tragic fate of displaced peoples across the globe (whose numbers now represent almost one percent of the world’s entire population).»

«But in an indirect fashion, perhaps art can be a kind of guide for how to live and think in ‘interesting times.’ The 58th International Art Exhibition will not have a theme per se, but will highlight a general approach to making art and a view of art’s social function as embracing both pleasure and critical thinking. The Exhibition will focus on the work of artists who challenge existing habits of thought and open up our readings of objects and images, gestures and situations. Art of this kind grows out of a practice of entertaining multiple perspectives: of holding in mind seemingly contradictory and incompatible notions, and juggling diverse ways of making sense of the world. Artists who think in this manner offer alternatives to the meaning of so-called facts by suggesting other ways of connecting and contextualising them. Animated by boundless curiosity and puncturing wit, their work encourages us to look askance at all unquestioned categories, concepts and subjectivities. It invites us to consider multiple alternatives and unfamiliar vantage points, and to discern the ways in which “order” has become the simultaneous presence of diverse orders.»

Four countries will be participating for the first time at the Biennale Arte: Algeria, Ghana, Madagascar, and Pakistan. The Dominican Republic and the Republic of Kazakhstan for the first time at the Biennale Arte with its own national pavilion.

Time to shine bright
Commissioner/Curator: Hellal Mahmoud Zoubir, National Council of Arts and Letters Ministry of Culture. Exhibitors: Rachida Azdaou, Hamza Bounoua, Amina Zoubir, Mourad Krinah, Oussama Tabti.
Venue: Fondamenta S. Giuseppe, 925

Find Yourself: Carnival as Resistance
Commissioner: Daryll Matthew, Minister of Sports, Culture, National Festivals and the Arts. Curator: Barbara Paca with Nina Khrushcheva. Exhibitors: Timothy Payne, Sir Gerald Price, Joseph Seton, and Frank Walter; Intangible Cultural, Heritage Artisans and Mas Troup.
Venue: Centro Culturale Don Orione Artigianelli, Dorsoduro 919


Commissioner: José Olympio da Veiga Pereira, Fundação Bienal de São Paulo.
Curator: Gabriel Pérez-Barreiro. Exhibitor: Bárbara Wagner & Benjamin de Burca.
Venue: Giardini

Entorno aleccionador (A Cautionary Environment)

Commissioner: Norma Rodríguez Derivet, Consejo Nacional de Artes Plásticas.
Curator: Margarita Sanchez Prieto. Exhibitors: Alejandro Campins, Alex Hérnandez, Ariamna Contino and Eugenio Tibaldi. Venue: Isola di San Servolo

DOMINICAN (Republic)
Naturaleza y biodiversidad en la República Dominicana

Commissioner: Eduardo Selman, Minister of Culture. Curators: Marianne de Tolentino, Simone Pieralice, Giovanni Verza. Exhibitors: Dario Oleaga, Ezequiel Taveras, Hulda Guzmán, Julio Valdez, Miguel Ramirez, Rita Bertrecchi, Nicola Pica, Marraffa & Casciotti.
Venue: Palazzo Albrizzi Capello, Cannaregio 4118 – Sala della Pace

Ghana Freedom

Commissioner: Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture. Curator: Nana Oforiatta Ayim.
Exhibitors: Felicia Abban, John Akomfrah, El Anatsui, Lynette Yiadom Boakye, Ibrahim Mahama, Selasi Awusi Sosu.
Venue: Arsenale


Commissioner: Ministry of Culture and Communication.
Curator: Giscard Bouchotte. Exhibitor: Jean Ulrick Désert.

Les ombres ouvertes de la mémoire

Commissioner: Nkoumo Koffissé Henri. Curator: Massimo Scaringella. Exhibitors: Ernest Dükü, Ananias Leki Dago, Valérie Oka, Tong Yanrunan.
Venue: Castello Gallery, Castello 1636/A

I have forgotten the night

Commissioner: Ministry of Culture, Promotion of Handicrafts and Safeguarding of the Republic of Madagascar Heritage. Curators: Rina Ralay Ranaivo, Emmanuel Daydé.
Exhibitor: Joël Andrianomearisoa.
Venue: Arsenale

MOZAMBIQUE (Republic of)
The Past, the Present and All in Between

Commissioner:  Domingos do Rosário Artur. Curator: Lidija K. Khachatourian.
Exhibitors: Gonçalo Mabunda, Mauro Pinto, Filipe Branquinho.
Venue: Palazzo Mora, Strada Nova, 3659

SEYCHELLES (Republic of)

Commissioner: Galen Bresson. Curator: Martin Kennedy.
Exhibitors: George Camille and Daniel Dodin.
Venue: Palazzo Mora, Strada Nova, 3659

SOUTH AFRICA (Republic of)
The stronger we become

Commissioner: Titi Nxumalo, Console Generale. Curators: Nkule Mabaso, Nomusa Makhubu. Exhibitors: Dineo Seshee Bopape, Tracey Rose, Mawande Ka Zenzile.
Venue: Arsenale

ZIMBABWE (Republic of)
Soko Risina Musoro (The Tale without a Head)

Commissioner: Doreen Sibanda, National Gallery of Zimbabwe. Curator: Raphael Chikukwa.  Exhibitors: Georgina Maxim, Neville Starling , Cosmos Shiridzinomwa, Kudzanai Violet Hwami.
Venue: Istituto Provinciale per L’infanzia “Santa Maria Della Pietà”. Calle della Pietà Castello n. 3701 (ground floor)

To go further visit The Biennale of Venezia

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