Universes in Universe / Caravan / 50th Venice Biennial / Utopia Station
La Biennale di Venezia, 50th International Art Exhibition, 15th June - 2nd November 2003
- Press information -
Curators: Molly Nesbit, Hans-Ulrich Obrist, Rirkrit Tiravanija
"Today the world is too dangerous for anything less than utopia," Buckminster Fuller once wrote. Because unfortunately this remains true, we propose to travel there together as a group. We can meet at Utopia Station. The Utopia Station in Venice will be nothing more or nothing less than a way station, a place to stop, to look, to talk and refresh the route. Utopia itself, an idea with a long history and many fixed ideologies, has loosened up to become a catalyst first, or the no-place it always was, a hope for the better future.
Physically the Utopia Station in Venice, projected by Rirkrit Tiravanija and Liam Gillick, will bring together the work of many different artists and architects who will build small structures, models and walls. Around them other small objects and projects, including drawings, small paintings and photographs, will be set up in a free arrangement. An open call has gone out to almost 160 artists for posters, which will add another layer of activity to swarm in the space and also beyond it, scattering individually into the city of Venice. The Utopia Station's artists come from around the world. To list every participant is not possible here. Let us say simply that it is a large, and growing, group. In alphabetical order it would begin with A12 and end with Andrea Zittel.
Throughout the summer, different speakers, writers, dancers, performers and musicians will be invited to give Utopia their ideas, radical actions and sounds. We imagine the Station filling with life. We imagine the Station defined as much by this life, i.e. by meeting, as by its things.
The Utopia Station project as a whole should be understood to be the
composite of its many layers, each unfolding at different speeds in different
times and places: seminars, meetings, stations, posters, performances
and books are coming en route. The Utopia Station in Venice will be the
first major stop. We envision a project extending over the next several
curated by Molly Nesbit, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Rirkrit Tiravanija, with Ariane Beyn, Elena Filopovic, Liz Linden, Francesca Grassi, Uwe Schwarzer and assisted by Thomas Boutoux, Rachel Diggs, Eireann Harper, Yair Keshet, Doris Loesch, Federico Nicolao, Matt Price and Chris Reitz.
The Utopia Station is part of a project that has already begun in the Utopia Seminar at part of the graduate program in visual arts (IUAV, University of Venice) and in the meeting for the Utopia Station held this past February at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York, continuing on in April at the Theater am Turm, Frankfurt, for the program Public Life.
The next venue for the Utopia Station will happen in two parts at the Haus der Kunst in Munich: Utopia Station I form September 21 – December 7, 2003; Utopia Station II, Fall 2004. Major support for Utopia Station has been granted by AFAA (Association Francaise Action Artistique). Others supports: Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), IASPIS, British Council, Ministry of Culture of Slovakia. The artists mentioned below will also take part in the Utopia Station Poster Project.
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