Universes in Universe / Caravan / 50th Venice Biennial / The Structure of Survival
La Biennale di Venezia, 50th International Art Exhibition, 15th June - 2nd November 2003
- Press information -
The Structure of Survival
Curated by Carlos Basualdo
Assistant Curator: Stephanie Mauch
Installation Design: Bevk & Perovic architects
This exhibition explores a constellation of themes related to the effects of political, economic and social crises in the developing world. The show does not attempt to fully document this situation, but to explore the ways in which artists and architects have reacted and react to these set of conditions. Notions of sustainability, self-organization and the articulation of various forms of aesthetic agency as forms of resistance are recurrent in the show, as it is the powerful image of one of the most shocking and imposing evidences of these conditions in the city, the overwhelming presence of the shanty towns. The show will thus trace their presence in the cultural imaginary of the developing world, and introduce the shanty as the object of a number of recent anthropological, urban and socio-economic studies.
The Structure of Survival attempts to interrogate a number of assumptions about what constitutes a "crisis" and how it manifest itself both in art and society. It is based on the notion that art is a form of knowledge and as such it creates the framework that help us both understand and react to these circumstances. In the last two decades, recurrent references to political, economic and social crisis in contemporary art have increased exponentially. This is likely related to the contradictory results of globalization and corporate capitalism, and the consequent deterioration of the living conditions of developing world populations. More and more, the rationality of the public sphere metamorphoses into ephemeral communal encounters and strategies of collective survival.
This exhibition will thus attempt to reflect this process by including the works of a number of contemporary artists from North and South America, Africa, Europe and Asia, who have been working on the subject. Among the artists included in the exhibition are: Grupo de Arte Callejero (Argentina) working in collaboration with Andreas Siekmann and Alice Creischer (Germany), Marepe (Brazil), Yona Friedman (Hungary-France), Muyiwa Osifuye (Nigeria), Rachel Harrison (USA), Antonio Ole (Angola), Juan Maidagan and Dolores Zinny (Argentina-USA), Carolina Caycedo (Colombia-UK), Fernanda Gomes (Brasil), Mikael Levin (USA-France) and Marjetica Potrc (Slovenia). The show will also include works of a selected group of historical figures like Gego (Venezuela) and Robert Smithson (USA).
Caracas Group / Rafael Pereira and Jesús
BAK / Juan Pablo Gómez + José Ignacio Vielma, María Isabel Espinosa, Joao de Freitas, Andrés Makowski + Lea Dojc, Camilo González, Alejandro Haiek, ODA / Eric Brewer + Juan Machado, María Isabel Peña. All Caracas Group members live and work in Caracas.
Carolina Caycedo Sanchez (Colombia/UK)
1978, London. Lives and works in London.
Alexandre da Cunha (Brazil)
1969, Rio de Janeiro. Lives and works in London.
Paola Di Bello (Italy)
1961, Naples. Lives and works in Milan.
Yona Friedman (France/Hungary)
1923, Budapest. Lives and works in Paris.
Gego (Gertrud Goldschmidt, Venezuela)
1912, Hamburg – 1994, Caracas.
Fernanda Gomes (Brazil)
1960, Rio de Janeiro. Lives and works in Rio de Janeiro.
Rachel Harrison (USA)
1966, New York. Lives and works in New York.
José Antonio Hernández-Diez
1964, Caracas. Lives and works in Barcelona.
Koo Jeong-a (Korea)
Lives and works in Paris.
Chris Ledochowski (South Africa)
1956, Pretoria. Lives and works in Cape Town (South Africa).
Mikael Levin (USA / France)
1954, New York. Lives and works in New York and Paris.
Marepe (Marcos Reis Peixoto, Brazil)
1970, Santo Antonio de Jesus (Bahia). Lives and works in Santo Antonio de Jesus.
Cildo Meireles (Brazil)
1948, Rio de Janeiro. Lives and works in Rio de Janeiro.
Oda Projesi (Turkey)
Özge Açykkol (1976, Istanbul). Günes Savas (1975, Istanbul) Seçil Yersel (1973, Istanbul) All three live and work in Istanbul.
Antonio Ole (Angola)
1951, Luanda (Angola). Lives and works in Luanda.
Olumuyiwa Olamide Osifuye (Nigeria)
1960, Lagos (Nigeria). Lives and works in Lagos.
Marjetica Potrc (Slovenia)
1953, Ljubliana. Lives and works in Ljubliana.
Raqs Media Collective (India)
Jeebesh Bagchi (1965, Delhi). Monica Narula
(1969, Delhi). Shuddhabrata Sengupta (1968, Delhi). All three live and work in Delhi.
Pedro Reyes (Mexico)
1972, Mexico City. Lives and works in Mexico City.
Andreas Siekmann / Alice Creischer (Germany
Andreas Siekmann (1961, Hamm, Germany). Alice Creischer (1960, Santa Fe). Both live and work in Berlin and Buenos Aires.
Grupo de Arte Callejero (Argentina)
Carolina Golden, Mariana Corral, Rafael Leona, Federico Geller, Lorena Bossi. Established 1997 in Buenos Aires; all members live and work in Buenos Aires.
Robert Smithson (USA)
1938, Passaic (Jersey) – 1973
Meyer Vaisman (Venezuela)
1960, Caracas. Lives and works in Barcelona.
Dolores Zinny / Juan Maidagan (Argentina
Dolores Zinny (1968, Rosario, Argentina). Juan Maidagan (1957, Rosario, Argentina). Both live and work in New York and Berlin.
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© Copyright text: Organizer, Carlos Basualdo. Website: Universes in Universe, Gerhard Haupt & Pat Binder