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Venice Biennale 2011 Giardini Review - Essay Example

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The exhibitions themselves are featured at Gardini Park and currently contain thirty national countries; this figure is regularly growing (for instance, 2005 was the first year China was featured). The 2011 Venice Biennale featured selections from numerous countries and genres of cutting-edge art selections. While a comprehensive review of all the countries would be lengthy, it is possible to consider some of the most prominent exhibitions. This essay reviews the Egyptian, German, French, British, Korean, and Japanese pavilions. Egypt While the Egyptian Pavilion is one of the more sporadic of the national pavilions at the 2011 Venice Biennale, it is also one of the more intriguing. The pavilion is noted as being, “honored to present a project in the name of friend and brother, Ahmed Basiony (1978-2011)” ("Universes in Universe"). Basiony was a professor that was recently killed by a sniper during the Egyptian political upheaval. As such, the works contained at the pavilion are a broad ranging selection of Basiony’s work. While a number of Basiony’s work is featured, perhaps the most prominent at the exhibition is his project 30 Days of Running in the Space. This exhibition is a highly abstract concept that is very visually appealing. The piece features an enclosed structure that is constructed with plastic sheets. The artist would then wear a sensory-based suit that would calculate levels of sweat he produced while inside of the enclosed structure that would then be transferred to the walls of the structure and produce a varying degree of corresponding colors. Considered alone, one can view a number of transcendental themes about the nature of the human and the universe and the singularity of existence. However, the Egyptian pavilion is noted to occur as an interaction with the other of Basiony’s pieces. In these regards, 30 Days of Running in the Space is juxtaposed against a number of other screens of material. One of the most prominent such juxtapositions are unedited film footage of individuals running during the revolts on the streets of Cairo. Within the context of the pavilion, Basiony’s original 30 Days of Running in the Space piece takes on newfound political connotations. For instance, the different colors produced by the individual running now represent fear and energy and the revolutionary spirit. In addition to these exhibits, a number of Basiony’s short film work is featured. The work was curated by Aida Eltoire and captures the recent tumultuous political and cultural occurrences of the region. German The German Pavilion at the 2011 Venice Biennale was also of the most outstanding of the world participating cultures. Indeed, the country won the festival’s Golden Lion award for Best National Participation ("Christoph schlingensief. german," 2011). Among the exhibits that were featured at the German exhibition include Christoph Schliengensief’s theatrical productions and films. In briefly viewing these works one is struck by their intense power and focus. Curated by Susanne Gaensheimer, the selection of Schliengenseif’s work varies in nature from experimental video work, photographic stills, and abstract art constructions. Among these works include the Fluxus oratorio A Church of Fear vs. the Alien Within; while highly abstract in nature, it’ ...Show more
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Summary

The Venice Biennale is one of the world’s largest and most significant art exhibitions. It has an illustrious history dating back to the late 19th century and lasted through a number of prominent historical events and a wide variety of famed curators…
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