VENICE.- Fondazione In Between Art Film
is presenting Penumbra, its first exhibition opening to the public at the Ospedaletto and Church of Santa Maria dei Derelitti in Venice on the occasion of the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia.
Penumbra features 8 new video installations commissioned to Karimah Ashadu (1985, UK), Jonathas De Andrade (1982, Brazil), Aziz Hazara (1992, Afghanistan), He Xiangyu (1986, China), Masbedo (Nicolò Massazza, 1973 and Iacopo Bedogni, 1970, Italy), James Richards (1983, UK), Emilija Škarnulytė (1987, Lithuania), and Ana Vaz (1986, Brazil). All works are commissioned and produced by Fondazione In Between Art Film, an initiative founded by Beatrice Bulgari.
Taking inspiration from the rarefied atmosphere of Venice and the hybrid architecture of the Ospedaletto and Church of Santa Maria dei Derelitti, Penumbra stages a reflection both on moving images as a space of material and metaphorical transformation, and on the conditions to make them visible, that is an almost total absence of light. The show embraces the physics interpretation of semi-darkness, and gestures towards the many areas of ambiguity, uncertainty, and transformation that dot our present. Each in their own way, all eight works deal with pressing contemporary issues, and address penumbral states of vulnerability and immunity, memory and history, truth and fiction, within the current landscape of global transformations.
More specifically, Karimah Ashadus Plateau (2021) portrays a group of undocumented tin-miners in Nigerias Jos-Plateau, exploring the implications and risks of their work in the detrimental aftermath of the British colonial regime. Boca Livre (Free Mouth, 2022) by Jonathas De Andrade engages with a group of homeless people gathered together for a Sunday lunch while questioning art as a political tool of speculative fiction. Filmed in Kabul right after the recent Taliban invasion, Aziz Hazaras Takbir (2021) observes the night as a thick space to escape from or to take refuge in. He Xiangyus House of Nations (2021) is an intimate portrait of a Chinese student living in Pandemics Berlin while grappling with his existential aspirations and uncertainties. Pantelleria (2022) by Masbedo engages with the historical and mythological legacy of the Second World Wars Operation Corkscrew through a community-based, participatory process of rediscovery. James Richards Untitled (2022) coalesces clips of sewage and digestive systems to look closer at the private and public dimensions of contagion, hygiene and decay. Aphotic Zone (2022) by Emilija Škarnulytė weaves together the horrors of ecological destruction and colonialism into a subtle meditation on surviving the ravages of human greed. Finally, Ana Vaz É Noite na América (It is Night in America, 2021) is a meditative portrait observing the many species that have been rescued and that now live in the Brasi- lia zoo, while challenging the ideology of their conservation.
The exhibition design by Ippolito Pestellini Laparelli and his studio 2050+ reflects on the history of the location whilst also spatializing the curatorial concept: Penumbra is both a state of mind and an experienceone that thrives in the beauty of the uncertain. Series of repetitive structures colonize and react to the heterogeneous assemblage of spaces that make up Complesso dellOspedaletto. Specifically framing and staging each film on display, the set-up is conceived as a collection of pieces from a dismembered body, at times enhancing, and others concealing the existing rooms. The space-time between one film and another is occupied by darkness, glimpses of light, and fragments of structures, collapsing the distinction between past, present, and future. The visitor is thus immersed into an immanent journey through a dormant architecture, floating into the unconscious flow of dreams.
Penumbra is curated by Alessandro Rabottini and Leonardo Bigazzirespectively Artistic Director and Curator at the Fondazioneand will be accompanied by a cross-disciplinary public programme curated by Bianca Stoppani and Paola Ugolinirespectively Editor and Curator at the Fondazione.
Complesso dellOspedaletto is a cultural venue part of Ospedaletto Contemporaneo promoted by Venews Arts.
FONDAZIONE IN BETWEEN ART FILM
Fondazione In Between Art Film was founded in Rome in October 2019 with the mission of promoting the culture of moving images and of supporting international artists, institutions and research centres that explore the dialogue between disciplines and the boundaries between film, video, performance and installation. Under the guidance of its founder and president Beatrice Bulgari, Fondazione In Between Art Film aims to contribute to the international artistic debate by furthering the role and potential of moving images in our time.
The Fondazione continues and expands the work of the production company In Between Art Film, which from 2012 to 2019 supported video and filmic productions by important international artists and directors such as Vanessa Beecroft, Pierre Bismuth, William Kentridge, Diego Marcon, Shirin Neshat, and Orhan Pamuk; as well as Angela Ricci Lucchi/Yervant Gianikian for dOCUMENTA 14; Adelita Husni-Bey and Anna Franceschini for the Italian pavilions at the Venice Biennale, respectively in 2017 and in 2019; and Yuri Ancarani, Jordi Colomer, and Masbedo for Manifesta 12 in Palermo. In addition, it supported the programmes of events and institutions such as MAXXI Museum, Rome; Tate Modern, London; Manifesta 12, Palermo; miart - international fair of modern and contemporary art, Milan; Center dArt Contemporain, Geneva; Centro Pecci, Prato; Lo schermo dellarte - Internation- al Festival of Cinema and Contemporary Art, Florence; Rencontres Internationales, Paris; GAMeC, Bergamo; Dhaka Art Summit, and LOOP Barcelona.
Karimah Ashadu (b. 1985, UK) is a British-Nigerian artist who lives and works between Hamburg and Lagos. Ashadus practice concerns the perception of self and place, as well as the concepts of labour and patriarchy relating to the socio-economic context of Nigeria and West Africa. Her work has been exhibited and screened in institutions such as Kunstverein, Hamburg; Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst, Leipzig; MoMA, New York; and Centre dArt Contemporain Geneva. Ashadu received the ars viva award (2020) and the Contemporary art prize (2020), Rotary Club. She also received awards at festivals such as the Ann Arbor Film Festival, European Media Art Festival, and Euro Video. Her work is part of the public collections of MoMA, New York; and Fonds Municipal dArt Contemporain de la Ville de Genève (FMAC). In 2020, Ashadu founded her film production company Golddust by Ashadu, which specializes in artists films on black culture and African discourses. She was named Abigail R. Cohen Fellow 2021 at the Columbia Institute for Ideas and Imagination, Paris.
Jonathas De Andrade (b. 1982, Brazil) is an artist who lives and works in Recife. De Andrade uses installations, photographs and videos to explore the effects of power dynamics in society, the evolution of humanity and of ethics with the aim of reflect- ing on the lasting consequences of modernist culturesomething that has pro- foundly changed Brazilian society due to numerous political decisions made in the twentieth century. His works have been shown in solo exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; New Museum, New York; The Power Plant, Toronto; Museu de Arte de São Paulo; Museu de Arte do Rio; Musée dart Contemporain de Montréal; Kunsthalle Lissabon; Centro Cultural São Paulo; among many others. De Andrades works were also presented at the MOMENTA Biennale de limage, Montréal (2019); Istanbul Biennial (2019); SITE Santa Fe; 32nd Biennial of San Paolo; Performa15, New York; Biennial of Lyon (2013); New Museum Triennial, New York (2011); and Mercosul Biennial (2009); among many others.
Aziz Hazara (b. 1992, Afghanistan) is an artist working across various media such as video installation, photography, sound, and sculpture. His work addresses the relationship between dichotomies such as proximity and distance, migration and memory, reality and fiction in the context of war on terror, amongst many others. In 2021, Hazara has been awarded with the Future Generation Art Prize. Hazara has shown his works at institutions such as PinchukArtCentre, Kyiv; Hessel Museum of Art - CCS Bard College, New York; Netwerk Aalst; 22nd Biennale of Sydney; and IKOB, Eupen; among others. He has also participated in residential programmes at Colomboscope, Colombo; Embassy of Foreign Artists (EoFA), Geneva; Camargo Foundation, Cassis; and KHOJ - International Artists Association, New Delhi. He is currently residence artist at Künstlerhaus Bethanien, and a grantee of Kf W Stiftung.
He Xiangyu (b. 1986, China) is an artist and film director who lives and works in Berlin. Emerging from a generation of artists who have experienced the radical changes in Chinas society reverberated within the economy and international relations, Hes practice is based on his unique cultural experience. Using a diverse range of media, his work contemplates and echoes the fatalistic micro conflicts on specific individuals in a time of macro geopolitical and historical turbulence. Hes works have been shown at institutions such as Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing; OCAT Institute, Shanghai; Para Site, Hong Kong; The Drawing Center, New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Smart Museum of Art, Chicago; Kadist Foundation, San Francisco; LACMA, Los Angeles; KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Centre Pompidou, Paris; and Castello di Rivoli, Turin, among others. Hes works were also presented at the 58th La Biennale di Venezia China Pavilion, 13th Biennale de Lyon, 10th Shanghai Biennale, 5th Yokohama Triennale, and 8th Busan Biennale. More recently, He Xiangyu was shortlisted for the Mario Merz Prize (2021) and the Future Generation Art Prize (2014).
Masbedo is Nicolò Massazza (b. 1973, Italy) and Iacopo Bedogni (b. 1970, Italy). They live in Milan and have been working together since 1999, focussing on video art and installations. They express themselves through the language of video, using different formats such as performance, theater, installation, photography and, recently, cinema. Their works have been exhibited in museums, biennials and institutions including ICA, Milan; MAMM - Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow; Manifesta12, Palermo; Center Pompidou / Forum des Images, Paris; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb; MART, Rovereto; Merz Foundation, Turin; Leopold Museum, Vienna; MAMBA - Museum of Modern Art of Buenos Aires; Castello di Rivoli, Turin; MAXXI, Rome, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; and 53rd International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia, just to name a few.
James Richards (b. 1983, UK) is an artist who lives and works between Berlin and London. His works have been presented in personal exhibitions at Castello di Rivoli, Turin; Malmö Konsthall; Künstlerhaus Stuttgart; Chapter Arts Center, Cardiff; ICA, London; Bergen Kunsthall; Kunstverein München; Chisenhale Gallery, London, among others. Richards works have also been featured in group shows at the Camden Arts Center, London; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis; MoMA, New York; Artists Space, New York; and the 55th International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia. In 2017, Richards represented Wales at the 57th International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia, and in 2014 he was shortlisted for the Turner Prize.
Emilija Škarnulytė (b. 1987, Lithuania) is an artist and film director. Škarnulytė creates immersive films and installations that explore deep time and the invisible structures of astronomy and geology, ecology as well as politics, through an approach that oscillates between the documentary and the imaginative. Škarnulytė won the Future Generation Art Prize 2019, represented Lithuania at the XXII Triennale di Milano, and was included in the Baltic Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2018. Her work has been featured in solo exhibitions at the National Gallery of Art, Vilnius; CAC, Vilnius; Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin; as well as in group exhibitions at Ballroom Marfa, Seoul Museum of Art, Kadist Foundation and Riga Biennial. Her films are included in the collections of IFA, Kadist Foundation and Center Pompidou and have been screened at the Serpentine Gallery, London; Pompidou Center, Paris; as well as at film festivals in Rotterdam, Busan and Oberhausen. Škarnulytė is the founder and currently co-directs the Polar Film Lab, a collective in Tromsø that works with analogue cinema, and is a member of the artistic duo New Mineral Collective.
Ana Vaz (b. 1986, Brazil) is an artist and film director who works with and considers cinema as a tool. Her films, or rather her film-poems, travel through territories and events haunted by the perennial consequences of internal and external forms of colonialism, and their footprints on the earth as well as on human and different from human forms. Her practice can also take the shape of writing, critical pedagogy, installations, film programs or ephemeral events, which are expansions or developments of her films. Her works have been presented, screened and discussed at film festivals, seminars and institutions such as Tate Modern, London; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Jeu de Paume, Paris; LUX Moving Images, London; New York Film Festival - Projections; TIFF Wavelengths, Toronto; BFI, London; Cinéma du Réel, Paris; TABAKALERA, San Sebastián; Whitechapel Gallery, London; MAM - Museum of Modern Art, São Paulo; SescBelenzinho, São Paulo; Matadero, Madrid; Jameel Arts Center, Dubai; Confort Moderne, Poitiers; Savvy Contemporary, Berlin; Sonic Acts, Amsterdam; among others. Vaz is also a founding member of the COYOTE collective along with Tristan Bera, Nuno da Luz, Elida Hoëg and Clémence Seurat, an interdisciplinary group working between ecology and political science through conceptual and experimental formats.