Pilgrimpace's Blog

June 14, 2015, 7:08 pm
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I was lucky enough to spend a few days in Venice recently visiting the Biennale with Bharti.  I enjoy seeing work that expands my horizons, that challenges the systems and structures without being crass or hectoring.  This makes me reflect on the role of beauty within politics.


Qiu Zhijie used traditional Chinese forms to reflect life in that country.

I was not able to discover which artist had made this large piece:



This huge passageway in the Arsenale (old dockyards) has been filled with sacks stitched together by Ibrahim Mahama.  Adrian Searle in The Guardian describes this well:

you walk as much as think your way through the biennale. A walk is a narrative, a picaresque filled with encounters and diversions. The long path that runs beside the medieval Corderie has been lined on either side with sewn together cocoa sacks.Ibrahim Mahama’s Out of Bounds is filled with incident – the sewn-on metal tags, the knotted ropes, the gaping holes and scribbles on the hessian. It is an evocation of a raddled world as much as a collection of thousands of sacks. It also speaks of labour: from the production of the sacks in south-east Asia, to their later use in the unregulated cocoa industry in Ghana, then their laborious repair in Mahama’s construction of these great curtains. This cumulative work – and the exhaustion that accompanies it – is acknowledged in our own walk between its sagging walls.


a ceiling made of faces from Turkey


A museum and wunderkammer reimagined by Mark Dion and Arseniy Zhilyaev:






The most moving show for us was Shilpa Gupta in ‘My East is Your West’ exploring the boundaries between India and Bangladesh.  This would not have come out well on my cheap phone camera, but there is a link to some of the work on Shilpa Gupta’s website here.


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