Venice Biennial 2015

Venice Biennial 2015

<h3 class=”p1″>Venice Biennale 2015</h3>

<p class=”p1″>“All the World’s Futures” curated by Okwui Enwezor is this years title for the Venice Biennale which runs until the 22<span class=”s1″><sup>nd</sup></span> November 2015, and for all art lovers this event is definitely something not to be missed.</p>

<p class=”p1″>TRIAD’s team was fortunate to be invited for the <span class=”s2″>vernissage </span>of the biennale and we set ourselves the huge task to see the Arsenale, 89 national pavilions and the 44 collateral event<span class=”s2″>s</span> in four days. Here we have the top 12 highlights of the Biennale.</p>

<p class=”p1″>The site specific installation <i>Shrine for Girls </i>by Patricia Cronin at the 16th Century Chiesa di San Gallo, which also happens to be the smallest church in Venice, is a commemoration to women and young girls around the world who face violence and repression. It is a simple and colourful installation and a powerful reminder at the same time.</p>

<p class=”p1″>Hong Kong artist Tsang Kin-Wah’s installation <i>The Infinite Nothing </i>brings together narratives of religious symbolism, philosophical concepts and popular cultural references through exquisite video installations.</p>

<p class=”p1″>The Romanian pavilion at the Giardini is represented by Adrian Gheni with the title Darwin’s Room<i>.</i> Curated by Mihai Pop, the installation is a strangely refreshing experience as it showcases paintings referencing the notions of survival and evolution. The paintings are so beautiful that it’s worth going to Venice just to see them.</p>

<p class=”p1″>The other pavilions at the Giardini that must be seen are the Venezuelan, Polish and Japanese. Be prepared for Japan’s pavilion with Chiharu <span class=”s5″>Shiota The Key in the Hand </span>as it will probably take your breath away with its delicate beauty.</p>

<p class=”p3″><span class=”s6″>At the Arsenale we recommend a visit to the Turkish Pavilion by Turkish-Armenian artist </span>Sarkis Zabunyan who touches on the subject of the creation of the universe and beginning of time. There is a wonderful neon light instal<span class=”s4″>l</span>ation representing the first ever rainbow.</p>

<p class=”p4″><span class=”s6″>Tuvalu’s Crossing the Tide is a floating pavilion by Taiwanese eco-artist Vincent </span>Huang, it represents the tiny pacific island and the problems they face if the sea levels continue to rise.</p>

<p class=”p5″>The last four exhibitions are off site events so if you have time to look around Venice, these are worth looking for.</p>

<p class=”p6″><span class=”s7″>Jaume Plensa’s work at </span><span class=”s8″>Basilica di San Giorgio Maggiore is </span>truly inspiring, as is his work always, but what is new are his drawings which, like his sculptures, take on a strange dimension.</p>

<p class=”p7″>Lampedusa is a floating installation by Vik Muniz. This public piece is a paper boat built to scale of one of the town’s traditional vaporettos. <span class=”s3″>Muniz’s work is a response to the migrants crossing the Mediterranean into the Italian island of Lampedusa. </span></p>

<p class=”p5″>Conflicting countries, <span class=”s6″>Pakistan </span>and I<span class=”s6″>ndia</span>, have joined forces for this year’s biennale in My <i>East is Your West. </i><span class=”s9″>Shilpa Gupta (India) and Rashid Rana (Pakistan)</span> have <span class=”s10″>expressed the integral essence of a people divided. </span></p>

<p class=”p5″>The Leading Thread by local artist <span class=”s6″>Federica M</span>arangoni placed a neon installation on the façade of Ca’ Pesaro, the thread leads inside the exhibition where more of her works are exhibited.</p>

Matt Gee: Natural Simulations at Husk, Londo

Matt Gee: Natural Simulations at Husk, Londo

Husk Gallery
649 – 651 Commercial Road 
E14 7LW 
United Kingdom
31 March –  21 April 2015 

Matt Gee: Natural Simulations

Natural Simulations is the title of emerging artist Matt Gee’s first solo show, at the Husk gallery in Limehouse, London. The show contains a series of small to large scale artificial crystal geode sculptures, canvases and video. I went to visit and see for myself the works on show.
The exhibition is housed in Husk, a former Danish fisherman’s chapel turned multi-format project space. It’s a cosy open plan interior with a little coffee shop area to the right as you walk in with sofas and a bookshelf (with real books!) to indulge in, then the gallery on your left and the drinks bar ahead. After acquainting myself with the bar, the next logical place was to go left. Husk, meaning ‘remember’ in Danish, has certainly tried to do just that. A plaque detailing the former function of this building is positioned on the wall of the stairs up to where one would find the chapel organ.
Matt Gee, Shelves of Faux Specimens Genuinely Archived. Photograph courtesy of London Artist, Steven Gee.

A surrounding of clean white walls of course have been installed in this space (no contemporary art space is complete without white walls) wedged in between the glossy red brickwork of the floor and the upper exposed rugged bricks of the chapel’s original architecture. One would almost forget if it weren’t for the white walls, and the presence of Gee’s art-e-facts.

I feel it’s fitting for Gee’s show, Natural Simulations, to be situated in a place such as this, after all, God knows the euphoric feeling of divinity. Gee returns to that of the sacred through mulit-sculptural compositions like Shelves of: Faux Specimens Genuinely Archived, 2015, a shrine taking the form of a natural history display. The largest work in the show, a headstone-looking piece of cavernous expanding foam taking dominant position.
The show primarily looks at Gee’s experimentations with chemically compounded crystals and the environmental toll of waste. He demonstrates a good eye for material appropriation as seen in Afloat, 2015, a heart shaped hanging sculpture (‘heart shaped’ if you’re in that initial deluded period of a relationship where everything, looked at from the right angle, looks enough like a heart in order to remind you of your love) made of a segment from a swimming float, polyurethane and perspex, hopefully adequately buoyant for when global temperatures raise incrementally enough to cataclysmically melt the polar ice caps, causing rising sea levels, one could grab hold of it and drift to the safety of Noah’s Ark. Or a piece of debris. Whichever comes first.
Matt Gee, Afloat, 2015. Photograph courtesy of London Artist, Steven Gee.
I commend Gee’s look at process as the defining feature of this exhibition – it’s not where you’re at, it’s how well you dance to death’s chime. But also what’s interesting about the Process Art movement is that mechanical reproductions have paved way for an industry of automation. Matt Gee’s use of chemical reactions in his work opens up scope for systems of production that occur without the artists’ hand, a discourse that has been pertinent in the art world since Marcel Duchamp’s readymades and more recently with artists like Damien Hirst and Takashi Murakami’s factory models of output.
The argument about whether or not the artist ever had handled the brush or wielded the chisel in the creation of work is no longer of necessity. What artists like Duchamp, Hirst and Gee are really looking at is a post-craft mode of production, the utility of an overload of materials, cheap labour, even cheaper manufacturing methods and a deficient global recycling system. They employ the same mode of practice as Zaha Hadid does with her architectural firm or as the film industry does in the production of a film. Together we can make bigger, more valuable and resource hungry creations. 
Gee’s work explores states of change and our relationship with artificial realities, asking at what point do we predominately live among simulated monuments and systems rather than those of the first order and would we genuinely recognise either? A baudrillardian quarrel because you never ‘know’ if he actually existed or not.

Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty, 1970 – Similar to Gee’s work with his themes on pollution, states that understanding the responsibility of the artist’s hand is necessary in order to establish a bond with our environment.

I suppose Natural Simulations takes that dialectic position. Expanding foam painted to reflect geological qualities, crystals grown in the artist’s studio simultaneously acting as a surrogate laboratory/mineral mining locale, these don’t operate to deceive but purely behave as truth. They are beyond simulations and simulacra’s, Gee’s work argues that they take root in reality. From the extensive extraction of conflict resources like Tantalum, the chemical element used in digital components, to its rapid increase in price as demand rose; considerably so during the release of the Sony PlayStation 2 games console in late 2000. Demand for the mineral still endures as high income nations continue an increasingly excessive consumption rate. A heavy price for a go on Fifa despite approximately 5.4 million deaths in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 1998 as a result. The Sony PlayStation 2 console, I believe, best delineates the reliance of an original corporeality in order for the simulation to operate. Naturally.
Natural Simulations attempts at presenting a holistic exposition and does so well. The show is open Tuesday – Saturday and on until 21st April. 
Matt Gee will be exhibiting his second solo show at Gallery 286, opening 14 July 2015, if you’ve managed to miss this one.
Written by Kosha Hussain

2014 London Remen Chopra and Veeranganakumari Solanki: The New Aesthetic

<strong>Forms of the New Aesthetic: Performed conversation between Remen Chopra and Veeranganakumari Solanki</strong>


TRIAD’s curators, Veeranganakumari Solanki, and artist Remen Chopra recently participated at the Biennale of Arezzo (Italy). Together, they produced a performed conversation based on theory of New Aesthetic. The main objective of this talk/performance is the active participation and interaction with an audience who will realised their current situation as that of the New Aesthetic.

A dialogue between the artist and the curator is staged as a conversation to reveal the form of the new-aesthetic. This is not an ordinary dialogue, it is not a staged discussion and neither is it a practiced performance; it is a visual sound, shadow and verbal narrative inculcating the new-aesthetic. The new-aesthetic is the new movement in art that has subconsciously filtered into contemporary practices. There is a new-aesthetic that is on the brink of spilling over into a renewal of ideas, forms, creative concepts and reflective thoughtforms. This staged dialogue will not only put forth the propositions of the artist and curator, but will disperse into a universal movement that will be taken up in various places around the world with each dialogue basing itself on this first base of the new-aesthetic. The conversations are partly spoken, partly recited, and often translated into the universal language of sound. The flow from one form to the next is a gradual one, which involves the audience into a spatial understanding of the theory of the new-aesthetic. The performance will be placed in the medium of time, since it plays a crucial role within the conception of this new-Renaissance aesthetic. The artist will weave a prose with projections of visuals into the theories of the curator’s structure. This will lead to an establishment of principles within the harmony of diversity in a fractured post-modern world. This theatrical intervention will create a base for the new aesthetic while posing questions, proposing answers and stimulating thoughtforms in relation to the progress of the new-aesthetic.

Script: Remen Chopra and Veeranganakumari Solanki