Paraguayan Pavilion – 55th Biennale di Venezia. June 1st – November 24th 2013

Paraguayan Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale
May 25, 2013 1:33PM

Artists: Pedro Barrail, Daniel Milessi, Diana Rossi, Felix Toranzos

Exhibition title: The Encyclopedic Palace of Paraguay

Commissioner: Elisa Victoria Aquino Laterza

Curator: Osvaldo Gonzalez Real Technical

Venue: Palazzo Carminati, Santa Croce 1882

1 June – 24 November 2013

Preview days: 29, 30 and 31 May 2013

The Government of Paraguay is taking part in the 55th International Art Exhibition for the fi rst time, and is doing so with works of four P araguayan artists under the title of “The Encyclopedic Palace of Paraguay”. It consists of works from various trends of contemporary art related to the main theme of the 55th International Art Exhibition - La Biennale di Venezia – curated b y Massimiliano Gioni.

Pedro Barrail presents his work, "View of Point", with an intervention in the main room where the paraguayan exhibition will take place. It comes to tackling the virtual space of the canvas with the real space of the room of the Palaz zo Carminati. The internal facade would be erased by its own image, which will have printed in the center a red dot: " You are not here ". This situation would be the metaphor of Paraguayan cultural isolation and of its wandering in the surrounding world: "a real maze of advertising images and entertainment media‘. The work is inspired by the writings of Jose fi na Pl á . In one of her poems, she spe aks of a "Landscape with no exit " such as the photographs, an unknown place, inhabited by dreams and silence, while we fl ee to nothingness.

The proposal of Daniel Milessi, "Yasururu Sororo" (invasion?) refers to the his tory of successive invaders of Guarani country (now Paraguay) through the Game of War, a video which presents a revisionist conception of history, from colonial days to the present. This game, where nobody wins, is institutionalized: usurers, bankers, and exploiters, supported by the political class in action. Something very important, from an aesthetic point of view, is the discovery by Milessi of the similarity between the design pattern of a native carpet and the videogames in - 8 - bit. Therefore, the visua l communication more suitable for Paraguayans would be: the video - games, part of the pop culture and the popular iconography. In fact the work is a video/animation/performance.

Diana Ros si was inspired by a prehistoric fossil, found recently in Paraguay. This is an installation that represents the anteater (“yurumi”) totemic animal of t he indigenous tribe Ache - Guayak í of Paraguay. For them this mammal is considered genitor, sacred ancesto r and icon of the ancient inhabitants of this land. It is made on the basis of “object - trouvé" such as bones, henhouse wires, discarded leather, Coke bottles, etc. The work also recalls the genocide committed against this indigenous tribe in 1973, during t he long Paraguayan dictatorship and conducted by landless peasants and soldiers. The survivors were interned in a kind of concentration camp run by Christian missionaries. The children of the massacred were sold as slaves. The idea of Diana is to pay tribu te to the memory of the disappe ared from the tribe Ache - Guayak í .

The work of Felix Toranzos is characterized by a proposal that intends to continue in time, the architectural design, octagonal, called in greek “Horologion”, of the Andronico of Cirro (late first century B.C.) and that appears after 2000 years repeated in the dome of the National Museum of Fine Arts of Asuncion, Paraguay. This Museum has no physical space of its own in the country and is still looking for a final destination. This "Palace of the Winds", which is also a clock of the elapsed time through history, has been transformed, thanks to the creativity of the artist, in a series of panels, printed with geome tric figures of hermetic renaissance inspiration sealed by the purest Pythagorean tradition, where the geometry and the numbers are divine. The search for lost times is retrieved, in this way, through art.

Paraguayan Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale