ILLUMInations 54th International Art Exhibition
by Bice Curiger
La Biennale di Venezia
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Searching for a new light as a means for communicating with the viewers.
“La Biennale is one of the world’s most important forums for the dissemination and illumination of the current developments in international art” states Curiger of her exhibition. “The title chosen, ILLUMInations, literally draws attention to the importance of such developments in a globalised world. I am particularly interested in the eagerness of many contemporary artists to establish an intense dialogue with the viewer, and to challenge the conventions through which contemporary art is viewed.”
The work of Venetian Renaissance painter Tintoretto will play a prominent role in ILLUMInations. Many contemporary artists claim to be searching for the same light, both rational and febrile, that animates some of Tintoretto’s later works. Tintoretto too was worried about upsetting the conventions of his time through a neat reckless approach to composition that overturns the well-defined, classical order of the Renaissance.
Tintoretto’s presence will thus establish an artistic, historical and emotional relationship with the local context, while the term ‘nations’ present in the exhibition’s title applies metaphorically to the recent developments in the arts all over the world, where overlapping groups form collectives of people representing a wide variety of differing activities and mentalities.
About the Author
Bice Curiger is an art historian and a critic, she has organized several exhibitions in various parts of the world and is currently the curator of the Zurich Kunsthaus. Curiger is also editor in chief of Parkett magazine and publishing director of Tate etc, London’s Tate Gallery art magazine. She’s the author of various publications on contemporary art, among which The Collected Writings (2002), Looks and tenebrae (1983) Meret Oppenheim: Defiance in the Face of Freedom (1982, 1990).
by Claudia Durastanti