The Venice art Biennale has become an internationally acclaimed charming and entertaining world as a sort of huge luna park for grown-ups, placed in a matchless scenario. The 2011 edition just left me some good memories of a few amazing works spread between the precious frames of the two main locations: Arsenale and Giardini.
One creation that particularly caught my attention was the Danish pavilion, which extended its presence outside the pavilion with a wooden installation and outside Giardini with a public project by artist Fos. His artwork, entitled Osloo, is a floating pavilion parked next to San Servolo island, which incorporated a bar, a radio station and a stage for lectures and events developing and analyzing the themes of language and sound. This public space was a re-interpretation of the Oslo pavilion built back in 1999: the first creation of the Danish artist exploring the concept of Social Design. Fos created an accessible space open to activities and social interaction for the citizens of Venice, students and visitors.
Another interesting contribution to the 2011 Biennale is the one by John Craig Freeman who created an extra pavilion using Augmented Reality architecture, together with the international Augmented Reality artists collective Manifest.AR. Their uninvited infiltration (as the ones of many other artists, that popped up during the exhibition) was alive thanks to the help of our smartphones, right in front of the the main pavilion in Giardini and in the middle of San Marco Square. His public artwork ‘Water wARs’ is a pavilion for undocumented artist/squatters and water war refugees. The project wants to be a sort of hypothetical flash forward of the consequences of environmental changes on people, like degradation, global warming and privatization of the world’s drink water supply by multinational corporations.
These kinds of interventions are nothing really new in the contemporary art panorama. Nevertheless, I support the ones who decide to participate in a ‘bare foot’ manner, staying far from the glossy institutional art scene.