Modem Europe Spring-Summer 2020
Cover by La Biennale di Venezia
For the cover and dividers of this edition of Modem Europe we have selected images of 10 of the 90 national pavilions that animate the 58th Venice Art Biennale : BELGIUM, FRANCE, GERMANY, USA, RUSSIA, CHINA, ICELAND, AUSTRIA, GREAT BRITAIN, LITHUANIA.
On cover : the LITHUANIAN Pavilion, Golden Lion for Best National Participation.
The jury was impressed with the Brechtian opera as well as the Pavilion’s engagement with the city of Venice and its inhabitants. Sun & Sea (Marina) is the piece, made by artists Lina Lapelyte, Vaiva Grainyte and Rugile Barzdziukaite.
The opera performance takes place on an artificial beach, where performers are leisurely sunbathing until they suddenly start singing about catastrophic ecological scenarios ! It is a critique of our societies consuming leisurely while destroying our planet.
Lucia Pietroiusti, the Lithuanian pavilion’s curator, — who is curator of general ecology and live programs at the Serpentine Galleries in London — encourages museums to start thinking differently as the fusion between theater, music, literature and visual arts in “Sun & Sea” is “exactly the kind of interdisciplinary collaboration that resonates in the present time”.
Contemporary Art is becoming more and more performative and performance itself is seen as more accessible to all, meaning also those who don’t have the cultural references required to understand most art installations.
The Special mention as National Participation was given to BELGIUM for “Mondo Cane,” (4th Modem divider) a comic mannequin-based installation by the artists Jos de Gruyter and Harald Thys. This installation questions social relations across Europe and how we can live close to each other and yet unaware of the other’s existence. The side rooms of this pavilion appear as a parallel world peopled by the marginalized. These two worlds exist in the same space, but they seem to be entirely unaware of one another.
Venice, Giardini and Arsenale, until 24 November 2019
Closed on Mondays (except on 2 September, 18 November)
Opening times: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. (last admission 5.45 p.m.)
Opening times of the Arsenale venue only: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
www.labiennale.org (special fees available)