Art Seen

9 Amazing Artworks Seen At This Year's Venice Biennale

Artists have created thought-provoking, timely, and beautiful art.

We at A Plus love the Venice Biennale — an art exhibition that runs in the Italian city through November 26 — because it gives a platform to some incredible artists from all walks of life who may not otherwise be seen. If you can't make it to Venice to see what's on display, don't worry — we've rounded up nine of our favorite artworks for you to check out below:


1. Lorenzo Quinn's "Support," represented by Halcyon Gallery

This is THE artwork that everyone is raving about this Biennale, and we can see why. These two large hands reaching out of the water and providing support to the Ca' Sagredo Hotel represents both humanity's power to build and support great things, and its power to destroy them.

2. Xavier Velihan's "Studio Venezia," French Pavilion

Xavier Velihan drastically transformed the French Pavilion into an "immersive installation that propels visitors to the world of the recording studio and that is inspired by the pioneering work of Kurt Schwitters, the Merzbau (1923-1937) ... The pavilion merges visual arts and music, with a nod not only to Bauhaus and the experiments of Black Mountain College but also Doug Aitken's Station to Station," Veilhan said, according to Mousse Magazine. 

Artists and musicians from any and all backgrounds are invited to play in the recording studio for the duration of the exhibition. And as you can see below the performances bring the space to life. And it's so cool!

3. Mohau Modisakeng's "Passage," South African Pavilion

This incredible immersive, three-channel video from the artist Mohau Modisakeng  "is a mournful meditation on the themes of transience, death, and the erasure of identity characteristic the long and brutal history of slavery in Southern Africa," according to Tyburn Gallery.

The installation brings the viewer in and surrounds them with these videos of black bodies dancing, but also drowning in a small sinking boat. The imagery recalls that of the historic slave ships and also the modern refugee crisis. It is breathtakingly beautiful and intensely sad.

4. Grisha Bruskin's "Theatrum Orbis," Russian Pavilion

"Theatrum Orbis" translates to "theater of the world" in English, and presents the works of Grisha Bruskin, Recycle Group, and Sasha Pirogova alongside contemporary Russian composers. Bruskin's work specifically deals with the current political climate, international terrorism, and the surveillance state. The haunting white sculptures on a black background brings to mind the Cold War and our current political climate.

5. Elvin Nabizade's "Under One Sun: The Art of Living Together," Azerbaijani Pavilion

This work by Elvin Nabizade aims to represent the cultural diversity within the country of Azerbaijan, and includes a number of suspended musical instruments.

6. Taus Makhacheva's "Tightrope," Central Pavilion

This video piece by Russian artist Taus Makhacheva is about the tightrope act that many artists do in order to make enough money to produce their artwork, as well as the self-doubt that comes into play in a personal art practice. 

7. Claudia Fontes' "The Horse Problem," Argentinian Pavilion

The viewer is confronted head on with the imagery of a girl standing up to, and trying to calm dow,n a larger than life-sized bucking horse. This could empowerment, that even though things may seem bigger than we can handle, by tackling it head on, you can come to a solution.

8. Lee Wan's "For a Better Tomorrow" and "Proper Time," Korean Pavilion

These two works at the Korean Pavilion focus on the conflicts and dislocation of modern Korean identities, and the artist's relationship with the West regarding assimilation and individuality.

9. Alicja Kwade's "WeltenLinie (One in a Time)," No Pavilion

Alicja Kwade on her work for the biennale "I hope that it is more like a feeling or experience than a solid sculpture; that is why I included the space so much — it's like a phantasm rather than an object." 

Cover Image: jelenakarakas / Instagram | theartnewspaper.official / Instagram


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