Italian Pavilion – 55th Biennale di Venezia. June 1st – November 24th 2013
Artists: Francesco Arena, Massimo Bartolini, Gianfranco Baruchello, Elisabetta Benassi, Flavio Favelli, Luigi Ghirri, Piero Golia, Francesca Grilli, Marcello Maloberti, Fabio Mauri, Giulio Paolini, Marco Tirelli, Luca Vitone, Sislej Xhafa
Exhibition title: Vice Versa
Curator: Bartolomeo Pietromarchi
Venue: Tese delle Vergini, Arsenale
1 June – 24 November 2013
Vice versa is the title chosen by curator Bartolomeo Pietromarchi for the Italian Pavilion exhibition project at the 55th International Art Exposition of the Venice Biennale, promoted by the Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities through the Directorate-General for the Landscape, Fine Arts, Architecture and Contemporary Art.
Vice versa picks up on a concept introduced by Giorgio Agamben in his book Categorie italiane. Studi di Poetica (1996), in which the philosopher maintained that in order to interpret Italian culture, we must identify a “series of diametrically linked concepts” capable of describing its underlying characteristics – binomials like tragedy/comedy, architecture/vagueness and speed/lightness thus become original keys for reading the fundamental works and artists of our cultural history.
Inspired by this vision, vice versa proposes an exposition made up of seven rooms, seven spaces, each of which hosts two artists in dialogue with one another, in which the works shown reveal the profound sense of this dialectical approach.
The exhibition is thus an ideal journey through Italian art of yesterday and today, an itinerary that tells of identities and landscapes – real and imaginary -, exploring the complexity and stratification of the country’s artistic and anthropological vicissitudes. It offers a portrait of recent art, no longer read as a clash between movements and generations, but as an atlas of themes and approaches that can be traced back to our national history and culture, in a cross-dialogue of 2 correspondences, derivations and differences, among the figures of acclaimed maestros and artists of later generations.