[artinfo] Firsts Solidarity Network of national pavilions established for the Venice Biennale
b2 at c3.hu
Wed Mar 30 13:52:59 CEST 2022
Fwd: e-flux <info at mailer.e-flux.com> (by way of János Sugár)
An informal Firsts Solidarity Network of national pavilions has been
established for the 59th International Venice Biennale. An artist-led
initiative comprising of artist/s who are a first-time representative
from a marginalised or under-represented group in their respective
country or a first time country participant at the Venice Biennale, will
offer visitors to Venice a route to discover these "firsts" at the
global art world event. For artists and curators the network offers
practical advice and camaraderie among participating pavilions.
Initiated by Yuki Kihara, the first Pasifika, Asian and Fa' afafine
(SÇmoa's "third gender") to present in the New Zealand Pavilion, the
informal network offers collegial support for the participating artists
and an opportunity to initiate discourse around pertinent issues such as
the internal structures of national pavilions and their commitment
towards equitable representation.
On establishing the Firsts Solidarity Network, Yuki Kihara says, "I
wanted to use the Venice Biennale as an opportunity to reach out to
other artists who are also first in the context of their own country. My
hope is to encourage discourse around equitable representation of
artist/s in their respective countries as well as allowing pavilions a
chance get to know one another and show support. In the first Biennale
since the COVID pandemic, I believe it is important for us to learn and
listen to one another, to seek out new voices and perspectives on the
world we live in through art."
Network membership has been organised by invitation. The participating
pavilions include the first Roma artist to represent a country at the
Venice Biennale, first all-female creative teams and first national
The Firsts Solidarity Network members:
Lumturi Blloshmi will be the first female artist to represent Albania
with a solo presentation and Adela Demetja the first Albanian female
curator of the pavilion at the Venice Biennale. Lumturi Blloshmi, who
passed away from COVID-related complications in 2020, will be given a
posthumous survey intended to reflect Blloshmi's tangible yet
simultaneously ungraspable universe.
The British Council has commissioned artist Sonia Boyce OBE RA to
represent Great Britain at the Venice Biennale, presenting a major solo
exhibition of new work that shows the vitality of collaborative play
leading to artistic innovation. Boyce is the first Black British woman
to represent Great Britain at the Venice Biennale.
Malgorzata Mirga-Tas will be the first Roma artist to ever represent a
country at the Venice Biennale. The artist will create an astrological
textile instalation, constantly subjected to re-enchantment, proposing a
kind of temporary and adventurous asylum to give viewers hope in those
times. The exhibition is an attempt to expand the Polish and European
art history with representations of Roma culture and is curated by
Wojciech SzymaŸski and Joanna Warsza.
The first Nepal pavilion at the Venice Biennale will feature the work of
Tsherin Sherpa, one of Nepal's foremost contemporary artists. Appointed
by Nepal's Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, the project
is co-commissioned by the Nepal Academy of Fine Arts and the Siddhartha
Arts Foundation, with lead global support from the Rubin Museum of Art.
Yuki Kihara will be the first Pasifika, Asian and Fa'afafine to present
in the New Zealand Pavilion. Kirhara's project Paradise Camp explores
small island ecologies, queer rights, intersectionality and
decolonisation through visually arresting photographic work and archival
research, challenging western (mis)interpretations of the Pacific
through the lens of the Fa'afafine community to which she belongs.
Artist Shubigi Rao and curator Ute Meta Bauer are the first-ever female
team to represent Singapore at Venice Biennale. Shubigi Rao's Pulp III:
A Short Biography of the Banished Book marks the midpoint of her
evocative 10-year project, Pulp, which explores the history of book
destruction and its impact on the futures of knowledge.
TBA21-Academy's Ocean Space will host a gathering of the Firsts
Solidarity Network members in Venice a week before the Vernissage.
Additional network activations will develop during the course of the
Follow the network on social media by searching the hashtag
#firstspavilionnetwork on Instagram.
For media enquiries, please contact:
Charlotte Sluter, SUTTON, T +44(0)7525118263 / charlotte at suttoncomms.com
For Australia/ New Zealand media enquiries, please contact:
Heather Byrne, Senior Communications Adviser, Creative New Zealand, T
+64 27 292 1589 / heather.byrne at creativenz.govt.nz
Katrina Raymond, T +61 417 303 158 / katrina at medialinkproductions.com
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