Every installment of the Venice Biannale is programmed by a different curator, this year, Massimiliano Gioni put together an extraordinary show around the theme of Marino Auriti's imaginary museum designed to house all the world's knowledge. The exhibition masterfully implies a passage through all of human history, represented by the works of approx 150 contemporary and 20th Century artists, including several outsider and unknown artists. The exhibition started with sculptures reminiscent of ancient artifacts and ended in Ryan Trecartin's epic video installation.
OK, full disclosure, like many biennale patrons I didn't get the chance to see all the national pavilions, but here are a few that stood out.
Richard Mosse for Ireland
The photographers signature infra red technique was presented in massive photos and a complex video installation. A stunning assault on the senses.
Alfredo Jarr for Chile
A haunting installation presenting a huge, detailed model of Venice sinking and rising from a pool of water.
Katrin Sigurdardottir for Iceland
The viewer becomes part of the piece simply by standing on the artist's complex tile installation.
Sarah Sze for USA
Sze's epic installation had me lost in the details. Constructed from all manner of found materials, the piece seemed to present a visual history complimentary to themes of The Encyclopedic Palace.
And two more for the road
The Museo Fortuny has to be one of my favourite museums anywhere. The current show of works by Antoni Tapies is quietly profound. No trip to Venice is complete without the Fortuny.
This time I visited the Palazzo Querini Stampalia for the first time. The collection was stunning and included site-specific installations by Jacob Hashimoto and Qiu Zhijie. Part of what makes this museum memorable was how beautifully the Palazzo was modernized, definitely some of the best architecture in Venice!