Mare Nostrum | ITSLIQUID

Mare Nostrum

Art | April 19, 2019 |

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail.

Mare Nostrum: Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy
Collateral Event of La Biennale di Venezia, Venice
May 8 – November 24, 2019

On the occasion of the 58th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia – the promoter the Brooklyn Rail and the curators Phong Bui and Francesca Pietropaolo have organized an official Collateral Event that addresses the environmental crisis in the age of climate change.

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail

The exhibition, Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare Nostrum, brings together 73 artists whose selected works in a wide range of media invite critical awareness on the fragility of nature and human life while poetically invoking the regeneration of living systems.  The exhibition is installed in the Chiesa delle Penitenti, an 18th-century church located in the Cannaregio section of Venice. 1001 Stories for Survival, an interdisciplinary program of free public conversations with artists, scientists, scholars, and writers, poetry readings, and musical performances that taking place during the run of the Biennale Arte 2019, from 11 May to 24 November, 2019, with a pre-opening from 8 May to 10 May.

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail

Positioned in the central space of the church, Wolfgang Laib‘s installation Passageway (2013) sets the exhibition‘s prevailing meditative tone as it offers a poetic rumination on the human being’s fleeting journey in life. Lauren Bon‘s site-specific installation Inverted Mediterranean Pine (2019), made of papier-mâché, and painted with carbon sourced from the recent California wildfires, is poised over a pre-existing hole in the church floor, revealing the foundation and lagoon beneath. Bon’s sound-scape, Oratorio Mare Nostrum, (2019), also produced for this show, connects the lagoon and the moon cycles in a layered aural map of the Mediterranean Sea. Her sculpture St. Jerome’s Study (2007-2019) recalls themes of translation and obliteration, while drawing attention to the threat of oil spills on our sea. Shoja Azari and Shahram Karimi‘s video projection on painting, Untitled: Meditation on Water Surface (2007), invokes a quiet moment of contemplation. While exploring the relationship between nature and technology, Julian Charrière‘s new work from his ongoing series Metamorphism (2016-2019) poignantly amplifies the subjects of ephemerality and transformation. Shirin Neshat‘s video Sarah (2016) creates a physical and emotional landscape, where the relationship between Woman and water is powerfully brought to the fore.

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail

The Brooklyn Rail journal – a radical and free publication based in New York City – has been presented with its staff during the course of the exhibition. The Brooklyn Rail team has been recreated its “social environment” in Venice where it will produce its monthly issues as well as an issue of the River Rail, an offshoot of the Brooklyn Rail, focusing on the condition of the Mediterranean Sea by documenting our public programming. Presented within the Brooklyn Rail’s working space are Phong Bui‘s portraits In Conversation #1 (2011-2019), calling forth the cultural significance of creative individuals, while evoking a democratic vista spanning generations, genders, races, and disciplines, as well as The Wall of Offering: To Venice With Love (2019), an altar-like installation of paintings, drawings, photographs, and sculptures by a wide range of established and emerging artists such as Yasi Alipour, Dana Buhl, Alex Katz, Jonas Mekas, Nathlie Provosty, Ugo Rondinone, Cordy Ryman, Amy Sillman, Jack Whitten and Lisa Yuskavage, among many others including Kiki Smith, whose sculpture of a young woman, Singer (2008), symbolically welcomes all viewers.

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail

The Wall of Offering invokes the spirit of cross-pollination that characterizes the collective energy of the Brooklyn Rail. Other works in this space include Newton Harrison‘s video of lectures A Meditation on the Mediterranean (2019), his Book of Lagoons (1974-1984), and Lauren Bon‘s Honey Collection from the Environmentally Endangered Mediterranean Countries (2008-ongoing). On view in the courtyard is Lauren Bon’s neon work Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy (2019), from which this exhibition takes inspiration, as well as Maya Lin’s Water Water Everywhere, Not a Drop to Drink (2019), a site-specific installation of blown-glass dew droplets, poetically encapsulates the theme of water. The courtyard has also been animated by performances: during the opening and closing receptions (on 8 May and 24 November, 2019), Rirkrit Tiravanija, Tomas Vu, and Sarah Sze have staged their cooking performances, bringing together the local and international community.

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail

Artists in the Exhibition: Peter Acheson, Yasi Alipour, Shoja Azari & Shahram Karimi, Max Becher & Andrea Robbins, Emma Bee Bernstein, Louis Block, Lauren Bon, Katherine Bradford, Joe Bradley, David Brooks, Dana Buhl, Phong Bui, Bunny Burson, Julian Charrière, Chuck Close, Christian de Boschnek, Iran do Espírito Santo, Aleksandar Duravcevic, Cameron Gainer, Tamara Gonzales, Ron Gorchov, Justin Brice Guariglia, Newton & Helen Mayer Harrison, EJ Hauser, Alfred Jensen, Bill Jensen, Alex Katz, Benjamin Keating, Wolfgang Laib, Chris Larson, Eugene Lemay, Matvey Levenstein, Dean Levin, Margrit Lewczuk, Maya Lin, Chris Martin, Hans Meebush, Jonas Mekas, Cy Morgan, Loren Munk, Hans Namuth, Shirin Neshat, David Novros, Optics Division of The Metabolic Studio (Lauren Bon, Richard Nielsen, Tristan Duke), Renate Ponsold, Diane Pontius, James Powers, James Prosek, Nathlie Provosty, Joanna Pousette-Dart, Joyce Robins, Dorothea Rockburne, Ugo Rondinone, Cordy Ryman, Meyer Schapiro, Cindy Sherman, Amy Sillman, Arthur Simms, Kiki Smith, Sarah Sze, Kazumi Tanaka, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Daniel Turner, Tomas Vu, Merrill Wagner, Jack Whitten, Peter Lamborn Wilson, Lisa Yuskavage.

more. www.brooklynrail.org

Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy: Mare NostrumImage courtesy of the artists and the Brooklyn Rail

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