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Venice – The exit interviews




Anastasia Klose

Did your Venice project live up to your plan, expectations and anticipations?

I think so, although I wasn’t prepared for the amount of camera attention. I felt like a tourist attraction! Actually, I felt like I was in Venice-land playing the character of the forlorn love-lost bride. Venice is such a surreal place, where people respond to a visual spectacle as if it were natural and appropriate, and then point their cameras without missing a beat. My favourite encounters were with the local children and grandmothers. The children were awe struck at the dress, and the nonnas couldn’t for the life of them understand where the groom had fled to. Quite a few young men couldn’t believe that I wasn’t married already, and it was a challenge to try and explain why I wasn’t. What could I say?

When I filmed the related “Film for my Nanna” in Melbourne in 2006, there was a difficulty and stress with the performance that didn’t exist in Venice. I didn’t feel like anything could go radically wrong in Venice, like it might have in Melbourne. Venice is a wealthy person’s playground – full of rich European art collectors and locals. These people were my audience. No emo teens on the streets of Flinders Street Station, or other colourful Melbourne characters to come along and do something crazy. So it felt less risky that way. On the other hand, the amount of cameras pointed at me was quite exhausting, and the most beautiful moments were when I was alone and my face would just sag.

What advice would you give to other artists if they had the chance to do a project during the Vernissage?

Try to go to Venice beforehand to get a feel for the city, and a sense of the context you will be working in. My feeling is that Venice demands beauty, and Venice demands a spectacle – these are the languages that seemingly transcend. But other artists will find ways to deal with the cultural and language barriers – maybe by employing very different strategies.

Will you make a work out of what you have already done in Venice?

Yes, I am working on a video at the moment. I am trying to really understand what happened over there by looking at all the footage that my mother shot. It’s like whittling away a piece of wood to see what the sculpture wants to be.

We know you were busy, but did you get a chance to see anything you liked during the Vernissage?

I loved the project of Christoph Schlingensief in the German Pavilion (which won a prize), and also the Swiss Pavilion (Thomas Hirschhorn’s work) and found Yael Bartana’s films in the Polish Pavilion intriguing. I also saw a battered car with women’s names painted in red all over it, which was beautiful. It was floating on a barge in the Grand Canal but I don’t know whose work that was.

Laresa Kosloff

Did your Venice project live up to your plan, expectations and anticipations?

I prepared for the project by getting fit and researching artists, however it still felt like a surreal proposition when I left. I wasn’t sure whether I would find the artists that I was looking for or whether they would agree to sign the cast. I thought that ideas of accessibility, authorization and fandom would be reflected in the performance regardless of the results, however I was really hoping to fill the cast with signatures. Fortunately everything went amazingly well and I had very nice interactions with artists such as Christian Boltanski, Thomas Hirschhorn and Karla Black. I knew that the performance would be quite challenging, however I hadn’t anticipated how strange it would feel to be so physically involved in an artwork over a number of days, particularly within the Venice environment.

What advice would you give to other artists if they had the chance to do a project during the Vernissage?

The three of us came up with really different projects because we all felt differently about the situation. I wouldn’t want to advise anyone too much as the work stems from a personal response to the event and location.

Will you make a work out of what you have already done in Venice?

I want to make a stand for the signed cast so that it can be displayed as a sculptural object. The stand will look like a cross between a museological display and a coat rack. I’m really happy with the documentation, particularly the photos of male artists such as Luc Tuymans bending down to sign the cast – he looks so chivalrous! I plan on printing a series of photos that narrate the performance. I also took some photos of myself looking at sculptural works during the Vernissage and these images will be new artworks too.

We know you were busy, but did you get a chance to see anything you liked during the Vernissage?

After the Vernissage I had two blissful cast-free days wandering around the Giardini and Arsenale. It was good to look at the art as opposed to trying to find the people who had made it! My highlights included works by Klara Lidén, Omar Faust, Rebecca Warren, Guy de Cointet, Dominik Lang, David Pérez Karmadavis, Reynier Leyva Novo and Marcus Schinwald.

Stuart Ringholt

Did your Venice project live up to your plan, expectations and anticipations?

It was initially planned that the actors would walk around Venice for a few hours each day or alternatively simply drink at a bar at night. But we went with a single hour performance in which two actors walked from near the Giardini to San Marco Square. I wanted plenty of slippage in audience and sent the actors in the opposite direction to the Giardini.

I intended to document the performance with video and stills yet whilst on the ground in Venice I decided to shoot a separate film ­too – the kind of fan-film trekkies make. It is a very short action film with running sequences, monsters and an escaping teleportation scene. The film was shot on the second day with one of the actors unfortunately injuring herself towards the end of shooting.  This put an end to the performance project. There is enough footage to edit the film when I get back to the studio and I am happy to have the opportunity to potentially produce this additional work.

What advice would you give to other artists if they had the chance to do a project during the Vernissage?

Teleportation has its risks so it is crucial you travel with your audience.

Will you make a work out of what you have already done in Venice?

Yes – I will continue to produce more trek works – books mainly.

We know you were busy, but did you get a chance to see anything you liked during the Vernissage?

I loved Christian Marclay’s 24 hours. I have wanted to see it and was pleasantly surprised to stumble upon it in Venice.  Rarely can an artist create a work for everyone and Marclay achieved this with great sophistication. A standout.  I liked Hirschhorn also and his refusal to succumb to context. The Czech and Slovak Pavilion was rich. I loved the rectangular umbrellas advertising the anti-nuclear campaign that was in full swing during the Vernisage. The abundance of street performances were fantastic, giving the biennale a carnival atmosphere

Any final comments?

Thank you to everyone involved who supported the project with a special thanks to the ACCA team, Dot Ringholt, Bernadette Evans and Paul Moneta.

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “Venice – The exit interviews

  1. Impressed.

    Posted by Oksana from Ulan-Ude | 16/10/2012, 12:17 pm
  2. Very soon this site will be famous amid all blogging people, due to it’s nice articles

    Posted by Gesundheit | 06/05/2013, 7:22 pm

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