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

Spanish Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale
May 24, 2013 11:45AM

Artist: Lara Almarcegui

Curator: Octavio Zaya 

Venue: Giardini della Biennale

1 June – 24 November 2013

Preview days: 29, 30 and 31 May 2013

Lara Almarcegui will represent Spain at the 55th Biennale di Venezia with an impressive installation in the Spanish Pavilion, which includes a research project on the island of Sacca San Mattia in Murano.

The artwork of Lara Almarcegui (Zaragoza, 1972) stems from a heightened awareness of the city, using its wastelands and buildings to reflect on the evolution of the urbis itself and the elements that comprise it. With engaged projects such as her guides to modern ruins and urban wastelands or her rubble mountains, Almarcegui has taken her practice to capital cities like London, Beirut and Vienna and has participated in major international contemporary art events such as Manifesta 9 (2012) and the São Paulo Biennial (2006).

Under the curatorial guidance of Octavio Zaya, Almarcegui will bring two related projects to the Italian exhibition—the highlight of the art world calendar—that continue in the same line as her previous works. One tackles the physical space of the Spanish Pavilion in the Giardini, while the other explores an empty plot of land beside the island of Murano.

In the pavilion, a large sculpture installation interacts with the architecture of the building constructed by Javier de Luque in 1922, occupying the entire interior. 

This intervention consists of mounds of different construction materials, of the same type and quantity used by workers to construct this very building in the early 20th century.

The installation revolves around a huge mountain of cement rubble, roofing tiles and bricks smashed to gravel which occupies the central room, making it virtually impossible to enter this space directly. Other lesser mounds, each of a different material (sawdust, glass and a blend of iron slag and ashes), will be located in the side rooms, which visitors will be able to walk through and so circle around the large central mound.

With regard to her project, Almarcegui explains, “The materials are the rubble from demolitions which, after being recycled, have been transformed into gravel by means of the treatment process currently used in Venice.”

Spanish Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale