International Exhibition of Sculptures and Installations
Venice, Lido, Island of San Servolo
1 September - 3 October 2010
Unique, eclectic and changing, this year OPEN, the International Exhibition of Sculptures and Installations, reaches its thirteenth edition, after a long history that has seen the participation of seventy-one countries, three hundred and sixty artists and one hundred and fifty curators. The event will be held from 1 September to 3 October, at the same time as the 67th Venice International Film Festival, offering a new path of expression, an open-air workshop, where the works are stages for contemplation and interaction.
Thirty-nine artists have been let loose on Venice Lido and the Island of San Servolo to define a physical and mental space, the allusive residue that lies in personal memory and in collective experience. Nearly all created specially for the exhibition, the sculptures and installations are spaces for reflection in which art transforms its tension towards the indefinite, eluding schemes and thematic constraints, to offer the visitor the possibility of thinking of a free art, open to evolution.
Conceived and curated by Paolo De Grandis, co-curated by Carlotta Scarpa, organised by Arte Communications, in collaboration with the Department of Culture of the Venice City Council, the exhibition is held under the patronage of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Veneto Region, the Province of Venice and Venice City Council.
At OPEN the combination of sculpture and the environment is an inexhaustible and fascinating theme, thanks to the strong conceptual matrix that is renewed with the aim of presenting the many aspects of artistic expression. The necessary counterpart is the urban spaces and green areas of a territory viewed in the complexity of its anthropological and cultural values. Over the years OPEN has created a strong genius loci thanks to the presence of countless international artists, who have brought different cultures and traditions to the island, redefining its cultural substratum. And so every year a broad horizon of linguistic experimentation is created, whose options in the case of sculpture have become more and more sensitive to the choice of materials, whether they be those of traditional sculpture or something more akin to industrial production, right up to installations that can undergo the most surprising processes of re-semantisation. In its interweave of nature and culture, inside and outside, biological and technological, OPEN condenses contemporary international trends thanks to synergic collaboration with critics, curators and institutions. This also marks the fifth year of the successful project for presenting the work of young artists from our Academies, this year it will be the turn of the prestigious Brera Academy of Fine Arts, curated by Saverio Simi de Burgis and coordinated by Marco Pellizzola. Nine talented young artists, Alberto Gianfreda, Michele Guido, Daniela Novello, Emanuela Rizzo, Federica Alì, Radis Nikzad, Chiara Rinaldi, Marco Maria Giuseppe Scifo and Jessica Soffiati present site-specific projects in the park of the Island of San Servolo which stimulate reflection and become cognitive meta-instruments in their own right.
The attention towards new recruits in the art world is also marked by the recent partnership with the Arte Laguna Prize. Among the finalists of the Arte Laguna Prize 2009, the young sculptors Theo Reeves-Evison, Olga Schigal and the two artists Koji Yoshida and Dario Tironi were chosen for OPEN. During the exhibition the Arte Laguna Special Prize will also be inaugurated, and assigned to an artist from the Brera Academy of Fine Arts, selected by the Arte Laguna jury. This award will offer the winner the possibility to be included among the finalists of the Arte Laguna Prize 2010 and to show his or her work on the circuit organised by the same association. This partnership will be increased in the future editions of OPEN, parallel to the PDG Arte Communications Special Prize within the ambit of the Arte Laguna Prize.
The spectator is offered a new path in the world of international contemporary art, a new open-air layout and a new reflection on art languages. The exhibition opens with the fundamental works of Dennis Oppenheim and ORLAN. The American artist, one of the leading exponents of contemporary conceptual art of the second half of the twentieth century, focussing especially on the creation of large installations in public spaces, presents “Heavy Dog Kiss”, an important work in marble which will later become part of the collection of the Museum of the Park of Portofino, directed by Daniele Crippa.
The approach of the French artist ORLAN is completely radical, opposing the banal and the expected. At OPEN she presents “Drive-in: ORLAN REMIX”, a video installation with an inflatable limousine where the hybrid concept is the absolute protagonist, able to become tangibly the signified and the signifier, the means of expression of the work of art of which it outlines the form and the content.
The work “Seconda natura” (second nature) by Gaetano K. Bodanza was designed especially for the dome of the Blue Moon. Here the relation to the primeval forces of nature, the exaltation of life as an irrepressible flow, the nomadic revelation without territory, time or language, are constant aspects that enhance the amazing expressive force of this reborn cycle of works, a preview of which will be presented at the Moretti & Moretti Gallery in Paris. Inspired by the work of the director John Woo, who will be awarded the Career Golden Lion at the Film Festival, “The Face Machine” by Amy Cheung is an investigation on violence, show business, the duo of good and bad, to capture their ancestral persistence and catapult the visitor into an interactive game. The panorama of the exhibition then continues through installations with a strong visual impact by Giacomo Roccon and Barbara Taboni, the work in progress by Aristotelis Deligiannidis, photographs by Margherita Errante in which the eye of the artist wanders and selects extreme snapshots, metaphor of a more and more globalising and globalised existential condition, and then the ironic work by the Argentinean Nora Iniesta, the modular structures by E.M.C. Collard, the video performance by Andrea Fincato and Giulio Escalona, and the experimentations in language by Annalù, Alice Olimpia Attanasio, Michela Pedron and Margherita Mauro. After that the visitor will be taken on an imaginary journey with the monolithic figures by Ursula Huber, the “travelling” sculptures by Gaspare Manos, the “dresses withoutbody” by Flavio Lucchini, the urban archaeological work by Stefano Fioresi, the Zen installation by Alexandra Marati, the conceptual “prayer” by Gina Brezini, the “blindfolded and gagged” profiles by Ottavio Pinarello, ending with the participation of the Cypriot artist Phanos Kyriacou and that of the Chinese Yi Zhou. Faithful to tradition, OPEN’s success over the years has been marked by the presence of numerous curators who have brought to the exhibition a research focussing on the latest trends in art and culture on both the national and the international scene. New participations this year include the presence of Alan Jones, from New York, a critic and curator of art exhibitions, who has always been one of the leading authorities on the Pop Art scene. Gloria Vallese will be with us again, with her dynamic promotion of young Italian art, and we continue our successful collaboration with Christos Savvidis for Greece, Chang Tsong-zung for Asia and Nevia Pizzul Capello for Germany. The works on show are parallel creations, even though they result from absolute freedom of expression, unconstrained by an obligatory theme, they meet, contaminate one another and form hybrids without losing their own identity.
The OPEN Prize also reaches its tenth edition. This special prize, coinciding with the 67th Venice International Film Festival, is awarded to a director taking part whose work shows a strong link between the cinema and the figurative arts. Founded by Arte Communication, this year’s prize is a work by the Master Gaspare Manos. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue containing comments by critics, presentations by the authorities and the list of the works on show. Available from the Arte Communications lnfopoint at Lido in Piazzale Bucintoro.
Artists taking part
ARGENTINE Nora Iniesta
CHINA Amy Cheung, Yi Zhou
GREAT BRITAINTheodore Reeves-Evison
GREECEAristotelis Deligiannidis, Alexandra Marati
ITALY Annalù, Alice Olimpia Attanasio, Gaetano K. Bodanza, Crash Toys (Koji Yoshida, Dario Tironi), Margherita Errante, Andrea Fincato - Giulio Escalona, Stefano Fioresi, Ursula Huber, Gaspare Manos, Margherita Mauro, Michela Pedron, Marco Pellizzola, Ottavio Pinarello, Giacomo Roccon - Barbara Taboni
RUSSIA Olga Schigal
USA Dennis Oppenheim
USA BULGARIA Gina Brezini
BRERA ACADEMY OF FINE ARTSFederica Alì, Alberto Gianfreda, Michele Guido, Radis Nikzad, Daniela Novello, Chiara Rinaldi, Emanuela Rizzo, Marco Scifo, Jessica Soffiati.