ArtVenice Biennale 2013 Early Entry Sampler

by the-biennial-project 14. April 2013 08:48

Hey artists of the world, if you haven’t entered the 2013 ArtVenice Biennale yet – shame on you!

What are you waiting for?

Unlike most of the exhibition opportunities out there, this one is actually organized by ARTISTS – i.e. people who totally comprehend that you put your goddamned heart and soul into your work – and we will work our tails off to promote it as widely as possible.

In that spirit, here is a small sampling of some of the excellent work submitted so far……

(And if you haven’t submitted, get your act together- the deadline is May 1st!)

FestaR2_in style

Rob Festa, in style, dye infused aluminum print, MASSACHUSETTS


Elena Buftea, neutrino -particula fantasma, acrylic +collage on canvas, ROMANIA



Charlie Lemay, American Political Pageant, Digital Photo Collage, NEW HAMPSHIRE



Clint Imboden, grenade #1 red, cast polyester resin, CALIFORNIA



Camila Santin, immeasurable, photograph, CHILE



Vanessa Thompson, where r you, photograph, MASSACHUSETTS



Paul Valadez, lessons in scorn, pencil and ink on paper – TEXAS


Bullock1_Evil Men Are Sexy

Peter Bullock Evil Men Are Sexy, collage (antique postage stamps) and acrylic – ILLINOIS



Erick Montgomery, Orbot107_ShimmeringPlateau, digital film still, RHODE ISLAND




Our Biennials | Venice Biennale Campaigns

Star of Venice to Rise over the 2013 Venice Biennale

by the-biennial-project 6. April 2013 15:54


Stylish and au courant, with just a soupcon of irreverence, that’s Star of Venice, the intoxicating new fragrance of The Biennial Project.


A talented Design Team of Leading Olfactory Experts led by the Renowned Perfumier Samantha Marder traveled the globe in search of the perfect ingredients for this unparalleled fragrance. 


No expense or endangered species was spared in their effort to bring forward the planet’s most dazzling aroma  - the first fragrance designed specifically for the visual artist.


This feat of Pure Art Alchemy will make the wearer instantly irresistible to everyone of significance in the art world.


From curators and critics….


to collectors and patrons,


this seductive aroma will open the doors to success and fame that most artists can only dream of.


No more toiling in poverty and anonymity, or experiencing your family’s palpable disappointment in your life,


Star of Venice is your ticket to the big time.




Star of Venice – for those who are ready to take the next step.


Star of Venice Caviar & Champagne

European Launch Party

by invitation only

June 2nd 2013

Palazzo degli Angeli,

Venice, Italy

In conjunction with

the Opening Week

of the 2013 Venice Biennale


(A limited number of advance orders for Star of Venice

will be taken during this Launch Event.)





Other Campaigns and High-jinks | Venice Biennale Campaigns

The Save Ireland from the Curators Project (TM)

by the-biennial-project 26. January 2013 10:47


Dear Mr Hess, Ms Rollins and Ms Salmeron,
I'm writing to you in connection to photographs on your Facebook page - namely Nos 18 and 19 from "Shit we liked at The Venice Biennale 54".
Corban and I would be grateful if you could remove these, as permission to stage/use these photographs was not obtained from us and the images present the artist, his work and the Pavilion in a less than favourable light. Also we find the captions rather derogatory, in particular: 

  • It is deeply offensive to refer to Corban as "a little person from Ireland"
  • Despite your claims he is not married
  • You comment about "Irish Slaves" is rather crass

Whilst we fully respect your artistic intention, we don't feel these photographs project a positive image about your work or that of a fellow practitioner.
I look forward to you response.
Eamonn Maxwell
Irish Pavilion @ Venice Biennale




Dearest Mr. Maxwell:

First and foremost, let us say how deeply honored we are to have received this notice from you. Finally, The Art World is paying attention to us.

Secondly, we would point out that putting one's work in the rather public forum of the Venice Biennale unfortunately does open one up to the possibility of being responded to by others in a less than a "positive image".

Thirdly, upon reflection, the "little person" reference was perhaps not our very finest moment. The artists of The Biennial Project are passionately committed to complete and total human and political rights for all of society's oppressed minorities, and this of course includes the height-challenged. Our comment was made in the context of praising Mr Corbin's work, and we thought that it was clear that we were poking fun at a stereotype rather than reinforcing it.

Which brings us to Fourthly - taking offense to the "Irish Slaves" reference. Really? Have you no sense of humor whatsoever?

We're from BOSTON for Christ's sake - we get the history of the Irish.
We arethe history of the Irish, a part of that history anyway."Irish Slaves"  built this town, swim deep in our personal gene pools, and have given Boston so very much of what we hold near and dear about our little seaside village. 

We're the ones after all who were insulted when Jack Nicholson did his usual crazy shtick while wearing a "kiss me I'm Irish" t-shirt in The Departed.

And way back when there were politics in the world, we're the ones who went to fundraisers in Dorchester for Noraid. (When the U.S. government bombed Afghanistan on the pretext of wanting to root out support for al-Qaeda, Noam Chomsky said it that was like the English government bombing Boston to defeat the IRA.) Hey there FBI agents reading this - finally something you can nail us with!

Not to mention that The Biennial Project usually plays well in Ireland - our website gets more hits from Irish users of the internet than any other country per capita. We have always attributed that to the Irish having a more developed ability to comprehend irony than most. 

Apparently there are exceptions to every rule. And because we know that manners apply even to those one believes to be misguided, we will take down the offending pics of Corbin.

More's the pity, we really do like his work.

The Biennial Project

  lucky2-1 lucky6  luckylucky celtics3   


Dear Sirs,
I am writing as a fan and supporter of the conceptual artist group known as “The Biennial Project.” As attendees at the opening reception for the Venice Biennial (with legitimate press credentials I might add) they took photos and published an edgy and satirical entry on the Biennial Project blog aptly titled “Shit we like…”

As luck would have it, The Biennial Project  had stumbled upon the Irish Pavilion. They really enjoyed the work presented there and loved chatting with the exceptionally friendly staff. When it came time for them to write a witty and sarcastic blog entry, they couldn’t help but to express sympathy and solidarity for these lovely ladies (and all behind-the-scenes art worker bees) by referring to them as Irish slaves. Perhaps it would have been more accurate to say (as they usually do in their writing) “gallery slaves”, but they were so excited to share with the world what they had seen that they couldn’t resist hitting the send button before the editor arrived.

And yes of course, they couldn’t let well enough alone and decided to have a bit of fun with Corban Walker by referring to him as a “little person” in their post. I will admit it: they and I love his work and are extremely jealous. We may be physically taller, but he is “culturally” taller than we’ll ever be.

In light of the above, The Biennial Project artists and their fan base were quite surprised to receive a “friendly” note from the curator of the Irish Pavilion which essentially represented a “cease and desist” order r/t the blog post referred to above. Apparently, as press-pass carrying visitors to the Biennial, they are not allowed to take pictures of the Irish Pavilion and present them in a way which didn’t show the artist and his work in a pre-approved light.

But wait a minute!  Aren’t we talking about Corban, the self-same artist who consistently references his bodily dimensions in sculptural work? Aren’t we talking about the fun-loving Corban who posed with Shaq in a picture which is readily available on the internet?

Yes all supporters of The Biennial Project were tickled. Yes we felt very important. Believe it or not, they don’t hear from upper-echelon international curators every day!  But ultimately we were sad. If freedom of speech and expression didn’t exist, Corban would not be having his 15 minutes…and neither would anyone interesting.

Truly in Art,
Cleah Saraholi,





boxingmakeup boxing3  boxing7boxing fun Boxing4


Ireland Corban Walker

Born, June 23 1967 Cancer in Dublin (Baile Átha Cliath) (IE)

Lives and Works In New York

Parents were architect Robin Walker and the art critic Dorothy Walker,

Mr. Walker, 43 years old, is a minimalist sculptor and installation artist known for layering and stacking industrial materials like glass, steel and LED lights into precarious arrangements.

Mr. Walker's work plays with mathematical rules of order and scale, yet he occasionally adds a distinctive twist by making pieces that stand around his own height of 1.2 meters.

He has his own App for The Venice Biennale




Guys We'd Fuck | Our Important Work with the Irish | Venice Biennale Campaigns

What MUST be accomplished in 2013 for the world to live as one

by the-biennial-project 1. January 2013 12:59




1.  Organize logistics for The Biennial Project Assault on Venice 2013 Tour with Stunning Germanic Precision.

2.  Publish our limited edition Venice Biennale 2013 Artist Trading Cards earlier than last time and give the art public the chance to snap them up.

3.  Get our press credentials in order so that we can see the show early and hang out with other important art world figures.

4.  Redouble our dedication to The Patented Biennial Project Less Of Us Program so as to lose at least 30 lbs between now and Venice to maximize our photogenic capabilities during the trip.

5.  Fly over the pond to Venice with a minimum of fuss, arriving at our Fabulous Vacation Villa Palazzo Angeli rested and ready to take the city by storm.

6.  Organize The Live Biennial Project Video Feed from Palazzo Angeli that eluded us last time.

7.  Have a fantastic time, soak up art, hang with friends.

8.  Get out on the streets (and canals) - meeting cool artists and movers and shakers while furthering international name recognition of The Biennial Project Brand.

9.  Organize the best Venice Biennale Art Exhibit And Party ever:

The Palazzo Angeli Biennale 2013.


10. Clean up afterwards.

11. Produce lively and ever more technically sophisticated video work/photography/writing on a variety of subjects including but not limited to: us/our friends/people we meet/art we like/art we don't like/parties, parties, parties/whatever Important Themes the Biennialist folk are discussing this time/anything involving nudity or questionable taste/butt running/Justin Getting Arrested/etc.

12. Get back to states without losing above video/photography/writing.

13. Spend rest of summer editing and publishing and following up on new contacts and projects. Do some of this from Maine. Use summer as a verb whenever possible.


OK, there you have it.

Let's get this party started!




The Biennial Project



Venice Biennale Campaigns

Boston Gal Sarah Sze picked to represent The USA in The Venice Biennale!!!

by the-biennial-project 14. October 2012 20:32

We know it has been February 23rd since The Bronx Museum of the Arts
announced that Sarah Sze was chosen to represent at The Venice Biennale for The
at the upcoming 2013 Venice Biennale. The Biennial Project did not report to you about this then because we were busy that week doing our thing
at The 2012 Whitney Biennial and throwing ‘a time’ at The First Windsor-Whitney Biennial.

sarah sze1sarahszebostonsarahh4
The Biennial Project is all balls out not only because we love, love, love her work - we are doublly proud because Ms. Sze (pronounced ZEE) is, you
, a Bostonian, born and raised right here in capital city of the Bay
, the home base for us, The Biennial Project.

Wicked fuckin’ pissa!!

Let’s make a Packie Run and buy some scratchies,and get retarded.

Sarah is no average chowder head. She comes from a notable family. Her great Grandfather, Dr. Alfred Sao-ke Sze was the first Chinese ambassador to the
US and her Grandfather Szeming Sze confounded The World Health Organization.
Grandma Bessie Li was a pianist. Her Dad Chia-Ming Sze is a
Chinese-American architect whose firm is located at 326 A Street in Southie.
He designs lots of municipal projects around town. He can be reached at or by phone 617-451-2727. Sarah’s Mummy is Judy Sze and
like most of Boston is of Irish descendent and is a retired schoolteacher.
We would never want to label her Lace Curtin. Judy's father was Alexander
known as Sandy, an advertising executive who was Brookline Rat born on December 28th, 1897. Her Bother David Li Ming Sze  attended Buckingham, Brown & Nichols in Cambridge and is now a general partner at Grey Lock Partners a private Equity firm located in San Mateo, CA and sits on the boards of Facebook, LinkIn, and Pandora to name a few.

sarahszedralsarahszesarahszefathersarahszemothersarah Sze brother
Sarah grew up on Beacon Hill in a 4 bedroom, 1890 mansard-roofed house
located at 44 Pinckney Street. According to Zillow the 3.242 sqft house is
valued at $2,165,447 and the 2012 property taxes were $24.197. Her folks
still live there. It's not the Triple Decker we are used to but we are sure
it has tons of chacta ­you knows.

sarahpicker2sarah sze pickersarah szetripple decker
Sze attended the Beacon Hill Nursery School with the other Brahmins at 74
Joy Street.
Beacon Hill Nursery School which was founded in 1955and whose primary mission is:
"to nurture our students' innate curiosity and lay the foundation for a
lifelong love of learning. We believe that children who develop strong
self-concepts and social and emotional skills are most successful both in
school and later in life."

Sarah left the Hill to further her education on the other side of the
at The Shady Hill School at 178 Coolidge Hill in The Peoples
Republic of Cambridge
. When Sarah Sze started as a Beginner at Shady Hill in
1973, a teacher described her as being "good at imaginative play." When she
graduated from the school's ninth grade in 1984, a teacher commented on her
"considerable artistic ability."

sarah szecharlessarahszeshady hill schollsarahszepeoplesrep
After Shady Hill, Sarah went on to Milton Academy which is a coeducational
independent preparatory boarding and day school in Milton, Massachusetts
consisting of a grade 9­-12 Upper School and a grade K­8 Lower School. Milton
is noted for its prestige and strong academic programs, having produced many
notable alumni, including Nobel Laureate, T. S. Eliot, several members of the
United States Congress, Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts,
Saturday Night Live comedian Jenny Slate, James Taylor and a handful of

 The Biennial Project knows of this institution as Mouth-on Academy because of the oral sex scandal that happened there a few years back when a 15 year-old female student gave head to five boys on the Hockey team, one right after another.

We like to think of Sarah as a teenager in the 80s hanging out in the Pit in Harvard Square or The Rat in Kenmore. She’d be rockin’ out to Tracy Chapmen or The J Geils Band, spraying her locks into a Hair Wall otherwise known as The Quinzee Claw or the Revere Claw.

Sarah Sze was invited back to Milton in 2007 to be the graduation speaker
when she gave the students permission to fail or be failures. Sarah’s sick
work entitled ‘The Edge of One of Many Circles’ is a permanent
installation at Milton Academy’s Schwarz Student Center. Sarah installed
it in 2006.

sarah SZe4sarahszethepitsarahszehairwall
After graduating Summa Cum Laude from Yale University in 1991, Sarah spent
a year in Japan working in Television and studying ikebana, which is Japanese
flower arranging. In 1992 she once again donned her skally and returned to
Taxachusetts where she worked in a Boston public school art-education
program and painted on weekends.

sarahhjaptv sarahhskallysarahhikeabana

It was that she met her Barney husband Siddhartha Mukherje while he was at Harvard Medical School. He then worked at Man’s Greatest Hospital, MGH .He authored the 2010 book, The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, which won the Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction, and was described by TIME Magazin, as one of the 100 most influential books of the last 100 years, and by the New York Times magazine as among the 100 best works of non-fiction.

Unfortunately New York City attracts Boston artists like flies on shit and
Sarah and Siddhartha moved down to the big apple so she could attend SVA.


In 2002 Sarah hopped on ‘the Pike’ and returned back home to Boston as
the second resident artist to participate in the series RSVPmfa, in which
artists are invited to respond to and work among the collections,
architecture, and grounds of the Museum of Fine Arts. At the MFA she selected the
activity-filled West Wing entrance, which extends to a second floor that is
visible through an elliptical balcony. Fascinated by the energy of the many
distractions in this area, as well as by the movement of the viewer through
space via escalators, Sze had a field day constructing her piece to unite
the first and second floors. It was anchored on a corner of the second floor
and swept up into the barrel vault above spanning the space above the first
floor and descending from a supporting column to the floor of the lobby. On
the first trip home Sze was greeted by Beacon Hill neighbors at a party
sponsored by the Beacon Hill Village.

sarahszethepikesarahsze mfa sculpturesarahhredsox2
Maybe she was craving a Regulah at Dunkies! Because Sarah banged a U-ie again in 2004 and returned to Red Sox Nation to put up the permanent installation ’Blue Poles’. This piece is a whimsical miniature fire escape on the front of MIT's Sidney-Pacific Graduate Residence. The work, commissioned by MIT's Percent-for-Art Program, is titled "Blue Poles", in honor of Jackson Pollock's 1952 drip painting by that name. This is totally ‘the shit’ and it is made of small blue steel ladders, balconies and stairways welded into fire-escape-like clusters, "Poles" climbs to the roof of the six-story building from just above the front door. In designing "Blue Poles," Sze said that she was inspired by her childhood memories of fire escapes on apartment buildings near her home. Those rickety iron or wooden structures, used both as places to relax and as escape routes, are rarely found on new buildings; "Blue Poles" reconnects the Sidney- Pacific residence to its urban past and to the myriad ways people adapt to crowding, anonymity and summer heat. Sze made "Blue Poles" during a yearlong residency at Alexander Calder's former studio in Sachet, France. Sze described her own work as related to Calder's in its focus on gravity and air and play. Some people thought this looked sketchy but we, The Biennial Project say that Blue Poles is The Pissa!!

Sarah must have been craving some jimmies from JP Licks and candle pin bowling because once again she took the Salt and Pepper Bridge ‘across The River’ to install ‘Model for Corner Plot’, Agassiz House, Radcliff Yard,Cambridge, MA.

This was Wicked Frickn’ mad

.sarahszecornor plot2sarahszecornor plotsarahszecornorplot2

So don’t we know that Sarah loves that dirty water because last year she returned once again to Boston not only to root for Da Broons, but also to do a residency with The ICA with Trajai Harrell in which she produced The Untitled
Still Life Collection
, a dynamic exchange between visual art and dance. This
was made possible by the Contemporary Art Centers (CAC) network administered
by the New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA).

sarah sze5sarahhicasarahhbruins


Venice Biennale Campaigns

Your Chance to Participate in the 2013 Venice Biennale

by the-biennial-project 2. September 2012 13:07


Hi friends. 

Yes, it's that time of year again.

Time to start thinking about The Biennial Project's 2013 Venice Biennale Tour de nights of art, art, and more art in, well, let's call it a pretty nice town.

And did we mention the parties?

The Venice Biennale - the world's largest Art Event, opens on June 1st 2013, with press preview days on May 29th, 30th, and 31st.
The Biennial Project 2013 Venice Biennale Tour will begin on May 30th - so that anyone who is interested in getting a press pass (it's not hard, and we can work with you to help you get one) can have some time to see the exhibits, meet the artists, and go to the insanely-cool pre-opening parties before the Biennale is officially open. With press credentials you also get in free everyday and can get friends in free too!
Here is where we will be staying:  

(This Residence is the perfect accommodation for a large group of people wishing to stay at the same place while having their own and individual privacy. The location could not be better, just footsteps off Campo San'Angelo, about 10 minutes away from San Marco, Rialto and the Accademia Bridge. The building is composed of 3 spacious apartments laid out on 4 floors in total.)

Click Here to see Our Fabulous Digs in Venice

Not bad huh?

The cost for this unforgetable trip will be between round $550 per person double occupancy for 7 nights.

For your ruples you will get a very well-organized trip and a one-of-a-kind experience with other fascinating artists, and an ability to promote your own work to an international audience. 
You do not have to participate in any Biennial Project antics if you are silly enough to prefer not to - but everyone MUST help out with the ridiculously cool party that the group will host - not so terribly unpleasant. 
We have spots for eighteen artists - with 14 spots already spoken for. So let us know right away if you want to be part of this amazing trip!!! 
To help you decide, here are excerpts from a few of the many reviews our artists wrote for the press after coming back from our trip last year:

"Where to start in trying to report back from the first week of a spectacle that represents the art world equivalent of the Super Bowl, Cannes Film Festival, and Mardi Gras rolled up all into one? First, by admitting that this huge city-wide production does undeniably include a fair portion of the narcissistic self-congratulation by pretentious bores and snobs that you imagine that it would. Then, by trying to explain that despite all the silly pomp and circumstance, the Venice Biennale is worth it, because of two crucial additional ingredients. One is a heart-breakingly beautiful city that deserves every one of it’s endless accolades, and remains deeply intoxicating despite hoards of tourists.

This is a city that is built on art and festival, and is easily up to the challenge of hosting planet earth’s biggest art circus.

The second is an intense focus on art and what art means that is not matched anywhere in the world. The closest experience I’d had to this prior to this trip was several years ago when I spent some time with actor friends at a Shakespeare festival. After a week of nonstop watching/thinking/talking all things Shakespearean, a friend leaned over and whispered mischievously that “the problem is, now we’ll think that Shakespeare matters”.

The Venice Biennale is this level of intensity raised a few orders of magnitude, and leaves you feeling that art might possibly still be relevant to the role of being human. For an artist, there is nothing like this. We few, we lucky few indeed.

So that’s what me and the band of artist siblings I traveled with are feeling now – the euphoria not yet dispelled by returning to stacks of unpaid bills and dirty laundry. That’s one good drug, and I’ll take it again the next chance I get."

Anna Salmeron, 2011 Venice Biennale, The Power and the Glory, DigBoston


"I’m in Venice – at last – and, with its subtle mists and roaring crowds, it does not disappoint. I have seen my first ineffable sunset and have had the various parts of my anatomy shoved by an indifferent attendant into an impossibly packed vaporetto. So I’m in Venice and pretty indiscriminately happy, wandering around the ‘back-behind’ of mobbed St. Mark’s Square, escaping from the sun and heat and screaming masses of people, who, as Henry James observed a century ago, should immediately leave and let me properly enjoy all this alone, when I happen on the big red “Biennale” pennant outside an old building, church, whatever, and enter, mostly just to get a rest. The place is dim, quiet, cool, and a bit of a ruin, stripped to its architectural bones, former function unrecognizable.  I climb the stairs to the loft and settle into a room-sized beanbag, and all I want or expect is about 15 minutes of peace. Luckily not to be had...

...Spectacle, you say? You bet. And I’d see it again. And, what’s more, it’s stayed with me and resonated this past month as no blockbuster movie has ever been able to do. One other point, about going to Venice.  Getting there cost an obscene amount of money and was a hard thing to decide to do in these times.  For anyone who still contemplates the purchase of, say, that big screen TV or latest i-thing, using the logic that these things are tangible and lasting whereas some vacation will be over in a matter of weeks, 

my advice is to go for the real lasting thing, the trip.

True, I saw some really bad art, ate some mediocre food, was roasted, stomped on, and drenched by torrential rains, but this show alone (and it wasn’t alone in its wondrousness, ref. Swiss, German, Polish, and British Pavilions) was worth the price of admission. When the electronic objects are nothing but additions to the recycle bin, I’ll still have the Biennale and the aging Disney marvel that is Venice."   


"When I look at art, I am unreasonable. I want it to ravish me, delight me. I want a revelation. Naturally, I am usually disappointed. But the Venice exhibition “New Chinese Art After the Cold War” left me exuberant and panting for more. I wish you could have been there."

Shelah Horvitz, Atlantic Works at Venice Biennale, DigBoston


That's all for now comrades -

see you in Venice!


(your favorite travel planners)

The Biennial Project




Venice Biennale Campaigns

Memories of The 53rd Biennale Closing Ceremony

by the-biennial-project 26. November 2011 11:50

With great emotions, this day marks the close of yet another Venice
Soon, Thomas Hisrschorn's crystal meth nightmare entitled ‘Crystal
of Resistance’
and Tabaimo’s soothing dream 'Teleco-Soup' will be laid to rest
like all of the other beautifully provocative art we saw all summer and


A memory is what is left when something happens and does not completely
unhappen.  ~Edward de Bono

We offer a pat on the head to our good friend and colleague Bice Curiger for a job
well done with La Biennale di Venezia 54 entitled ILLUMInations (spelled
with a Capital I, capital L, another capital L, big letter U and finally a
capital M) We agree that the utopian, neoliberal idea that we can escape
such boundaries is what curator Curiger attempts to support with a hint of
neo-romanticism(even if she could not find us space in the Arsenale).

Hopefully Bicey took some time off this fall and took our advise and used our cottage at Kennebunk Gallery Motel & Cottages in Kennebunk, Maine which we
call The Compound. The Kennebunk Gallery Motel & Cottages
is a family owned complex in the "heart" of the Kennebunk and they honor a
AAA discount. We told her to take  advantage of the off season rates which
include accommodations in the Small Cottage for $55.00 for two adults, the
two bedroom cottage for $95.00 or the motel room which is
$55.00 a night for two adults.This price includes FREE beach parking passes
FREE morning coffee served in the office. Kennebunk Compound Website

Kennebunk Gallery Motel & Cottages2Kennebunk Gallery Motel & Cottages1Kennebunk Gallery Motel & Cottages3

Anyhow with all this closing stuff of the Biennale going on we can't help
but remember the good time we had hosting the Closing Ceremony for the 53rd


Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the
things you never want to lose.  ~From the television show The Wonder Years


Here is a You Tube Video of our esteemed event during precious  last hours
of The 53rd Biennale entitled 'Making Worlds'.


We also want to celebrate this occasion as the evening we were enchanted for
the first time by one of our most treasured, ardent and colorful fans, VITO.
Vito occupies a permanent place in our minds and hearts for his performance
of ‘We Are The World’  with Laura at the end of Closing Reception for the 53rd
Venice Biennale
hosted by us, The Biennial Project. After our our party we
were woeful because in all the excitement we lost his contact information.
Well the despair absconded because this June Vito showed up to our Boston
Online Biennial Reception
during the opening week of this years Biennale!! He brought his own theatrical performance and did a reading of Oscar Wilde.


Vito also brought it all home and he and Laura conjured up their best drunken Donny and Marie and revisited the musical splendor from two years before.


We were electrified by his presence and his encore performance. Sadly, once
again we lost his contact information.


  A good performance, like a human life, is a temporal affair‹a process in
time. It is good as a whole through being good in its parts, and through
their good order to one another. It cannot be called good as a whole until
it is finished. During the process all we can say of it, if we speak
precisely, is that it is becoming good. The same is true of a whole human
life. Just as the whole performance never exists at any one time, but is a
process of becoming, so a human life is also a performance in time and a
process of becoming. And just as the goodness that attaches to the
performance as a whole does not attach to any of its parts, so the goodness
of a human life as a whole belongs to it alone, and not to any of its parts
or phases.
Mortimor J. Adler


Venice Biennale Campaigns


by the-biennial-project 31. October 2011 17:38











To read the press materials about the Venezuela Pavilion in the 54th Venice Biennale is to be underwhelmed to say the very least.  To sum it up, the Pavilion is described as having three “contemporary art projects in a single show, two of which are individual projects and the third a collective one.”  The writing that appears in both the press release and in the official catalogue goes on to say that the show entitled, “Espacios, emerges from the idea of studying and analyzing the interaction and encounter between the artist (artwork), spectator (who activates the artwork), and the vessel (the space that is susceptible to or facilitates this encounter), which in other words are three readings of the sine qua non-relation-condition of visual arts” …

have you started pounding the tequila shots yet to alleviate the numbing of your brain from such boring drivel?

If I had read either the press release or the catalogue before visiting the Venezuela Pavilion I would have missed one the highlights of the 54th Biennale—the energetic, riveting and hilarious work of Francisco Bassim’s Gran Interior installation of paintings.  Set in a great open room of the Carlo Scarpa-designed buiding that was constructed in 1954, Bassim has created a number of acrylic-on-canvas-instantly-recognizeable-figures from the 20th and 21stcenturies.  The cartoonish characters, looking equally like paper dolls and refrigerator magnets with a mix and match approach to the heads and bodies, fly, float and zoom along the walls of the great room.

Many of the great heroes and anti-heroes of the last 100 years make an appearance.

A fanciful Hannibal Lecter is on roller blades and a Jack Nicholson (Batman) Joker with a cherubic body sits on the lap of His Holiness, the Pope.

Mona Lisa kicks across the wall as akarate kid. Frieda Kahlo swoops down in a little girl’s sailor outfit wearing a pair of those kid shoes that have little miniature wheels on them.  Michael Jackson appears in an enigmatic outfit—it could belong to a cheerleader or a basketball player—offering a bouquet of roses to the viewer.  Albert Einstien is a kind-of-buff-yet-starting-to-go-slack-old-man that pants creepily at the audience from his place on the great wall.

Of course the usual modern political suspects are there too.  Barrack Obama has the body of a vulnerable naked child protecting his private parts.  Adolf Hitler looks like a cliff diver swooping down on Obama  while Joseph Stalin innocently swings through space dressed as a child but sporting a pair of Mary Jane shoes.   George W (the younger) seems lost in reverie (uh-hmmmm!!!!) dressed in a polyester-esque circa 1974 roller derby outfit.  He hovers above one of the Queen’s corgis.  Mao sits nearby in  similar costume—also seemingly lost in his own thoughts.

Both Bush and Mao have sweet un-bequiled expressions on their faces …

who would believe that either one could be an evil-doer …

Glaring over the shoulders of both W and Mao is Lady Liberty.  Her face is unmistakably masculine and worried/hurt/angry though her clothes are of a young girl who might be attending a Sunday school party.  Her body language clearly suggests that she is offended.

The Gran Interior—which mixes recognizable characters with numerous anonymous cherubs that are also flying and floating on the walls is clearly a nod in general to the great historical paintings of the Italian Renaissance masters—many who worked in Venice..  The press release also suggests that the installation “refers us directly to rich and controversial conceptual boundaries between painting and decoration, which are of course present in Tintoretto’s work for the Scuola Grande di San Rocco in Venice.”

For me,  Francisco Bassim’s random, playful, but yet often ironic creation of such historically loaded characters was fascinating.  Ultimately the fanciful mix and match treatment resulted in a great equalizing factor—whether the “celebrity” had been considered a hero or a villain prior to my encounter with the installation, I was left with the notion that they all, ultimately, had been children once …

As a post script, The Biennial Project had the pleasure of meeting Francisco during the opening week of the Biennale.  We shockingly learned that he has not exhibited in the US.


His work truly is  not to be missed.


Venice Biennale Campaigns

The Biennial Project Running of the Butts at the 2011 Venice Biennale

by the-biennial-project 29. September 2011 08:50

Think that nothing that The Biennial Project will do to get attention will shock you? 

The Biennial Project Running of the Butts at the 2011 Venice Biennale

The Biennial Project Running of the Butts at the 2011 Venice Biennale

    Think again.


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by the-biennial-project 11. July 2011 17:53



I’m in Venice – at last – and, with its subtle mists and roaring crowds, it does not disappoint. I have seen my first ineffable sunset and have had the various parts of my anatomy shoved by an indifferent attendant into an impossibly packed vaporetto. So I’m in Venice and pretty indiscriminately happy, wandering around the ‘back-behind’ of mobbed St. Mark’s Square, escaping from the sun and heat and screaming masses of people, who, as Henry James observed a century ago, should immediately leave and let me properly enjoy all this alone, when I happen on the big red “Biennale” pennant outside an old building, church, whatever, and enter, mostly just to get a rest.

The place is dim, quiet, cool, and a bit of a ruin, stripped to its architectural bones, former function unrecognizable.  I climb the stairs to the loft and settle into a room-sized beanbag, and all I want or expect is about 15 minutes of peace.  Luckily not to be had.

As I become accustomed to the light, I see around me people transfixed by a large screen cycling into a new showing of Singapore’s ‘The Cloud of Unknowing,’ which turns out to be the trippiest experience one could possibly have without aid of hallucinogen or other radical brain alteration.  And no one already present is leaving.

The video cycles through six apartments in a low-rent neglected urban high-rise, showing its largish occupants, 4 men, one woman, and some vegetation, at various mostly ordinary occupations leading up to – what is this? — their envelopment by cloud emanating from various parts of their apartments, from the bookcases, appliances, furnishings.

It’s a wonderful set of contrasts between the ‘nothingness’ of the cloud and the persistent bulkiness of the humans (and possibly the plants as well), the mundanity of their quotidian existences and the magical things that happen to them as they’re being engulfed, the silence of the solitary, monastic modern high rise cells otherwise known as apartments, and the joyous uproar of a drummer exuberantly banging things from a zone somewhere between monastic gongs and pure rock and roll.

As the cloud descends, dreaming man is sucked into white-sheeted bed, drummer is subsumed by torrential rains, and moss-filled apartment just plain luxuriates … I think.

What’s it all about?  I’m not sure it’s really necessary to know this but the title of the video refers to a 14th century mystical Christian tract of the same name, and references a whole lot of Renaissance and later cloud imagery, and, now, the amorphousness of the digital universe, adroitly intertwining the twin threads of baroque and minimal that have so dominated contemporary art for the past several years.

Giving away the end – since it’s not likely to be in the local multiplex any time soon – as the screen fills with luminous cloud turning to pure light, the dark-ribbed old wooden loft begins also to fill with all-obscuring cloud.

Spectacle, you say?  You bet.  And I’d see it again.  And, what’s more, it’s stayed with me and resonated this past month as no blockbuster movie has ever been able to do.

One other point, about going to Venice.  Getting there cost an obscene amount of money and was a hard thing to decide to do in these times.  For anyone who still contemplates the purchase of, say, that big screen TV or latest i-thing, using the logic that these things are tangible and lasting whereas some vacation will be over in a matter of weeks,

my advice is to go for the real lasting thing, the trip.

True, I saw some really bad art, ate some mediocre food, was roasted, stomped on, and drenched by torrential rains, but this show alone (and it wasn’t alone in its wondrousness, ref. Swiss, German, Polish, and British Pavilions) was worth the price of admission. When the electronic objects are nothing but additions to the recycle bin, I’ll still have the Biennale and the aging Disney marvel that is Venice.


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