ArtSway's New Forest Pavilion
54th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia 2011
Palazzo Zenobio, Fondamenta Del Soccorso,
Dorsoduro 2596, Venice, Italy
Open: 4 June - 26 June 2011, Tuesday - Sunday 10.00 - 18.00
Press and Previews: Wednesday 1, Thursday 2, Friday 3 June 2011
Featuring Artists: Gayle Chong Kwan, Dave Lewis, Hew Locke, Mike Marshall, Christopher Orr, Sophy Rickett
ArtSway, in collaboration with the Arts University College at Bournemouth, presents the fourth iteration of ArtSway's New Forest Pavilion at Palazzo Zenobio, as an official collateral event for the 54th International Art Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia.
Featuring a number of new commissions, each artist explores, in different approaches, ideas relating to nationhood, ecology and landscape as seen within a modern global context.
Gayle Chong Kwan's installation The Obsidian Isle explores ideas of collective history, the senses and memory, national identity, landscape and tourism. Chong Kwan documents an island which houses the lost and destroyed places of her native Scotland, referencing the 18th century fictionalized epic of Ossian, as well as her Mauritian heritage, an island whose landscape is being theatricalised and consumed through the global tourist industry.
Dave Lewis is a UK born artist whose Grenadian heritage provides a strong reference point in his work. Examining mass migration and identity, Lewis is extending his research to Venice; posing as a stranger, dressing in clothes similar to those of his father, and exploring ideas relating to identity and black consciousness in the 1960s as compared with today. Here Lewis presents a series of large-scale colour photographs alongside smaller black and white images.
Globalisation and ‘Britishness' are recurring themes in the work of Hew Locke. Locke was born in Scotland, but spent his early years in newly independent Guyana - a former British colony that was attempting to find its place in the international community. His work focuses on notions of loss of power and prestige, particularly in light of the recent economic downturn. Locke's recent commission for ArtSway - Starchitect - is an installation constructed from cut and painted plywood sheets, featuring sculptural objects which for La Biennale is condensed into one room, presented as a ‘treasury', linking to the former colonial standing of Venice.
Mike Marshall's elegant and poetic film and photographs are inspired by natural events and the ecology of the natural environment. His new film for Venice – A Prism Splits Light – was filmed in Cyprus, featuring migrant workers from Vietnam and how the land on which they work is utilised.
In contrast, Christopher Orr's small jewel-like paintings embody elements of the Sublime and Surrealism, but feature a highly personal lexicon of motifs that are deliberately anachronistic in the modern, interconnected world.
Sophy Rickett's three-channel film work To The River references a natural event - the ‘Severn Bore', a mini tidal-wave that twice a year runs the length of the River Severn in south west England. Yet rather than simply recording the event, Rickett instead documents conversations with the people who gather to witness the Bore.
ArtSway's New Forest Pavilion presents these artists to the professional and international visual arts community, while promoting ArtSway's pioneering approach to legacy support, partnerships, and opportunities for artists it has previously worked with.
Gayle Chong Kwan's The Obsidian Isle (2011) developed out of a residency at Ricefield Chinese Arts and Cultural Centre, Glasgow, with support from Creative Scotland, and will be shown in full at Street Level Photoworks, Glasgow, from 7 October – 3 December 2011.
Dave Lewis's new work for Venice is a development of Field Work (2010), which was a co-commission between ArtSway, Autograph ABP and Oriel Davies Gallery.
Hew Locke's Starchitect (2011) is a co-commission between ArtSway and the Arts University College at Bournemouth with additional support from Hales Gallery.
Mike Marshall's new work is a co-commission between ArtSway and Stour Valley Arts with additional funding from Barker-Mill Foundation.
Christopher Orr was co-commissioned by ArtSway and the Arts University College at Bournemouth in 2010 with additional support from IBID Projects and Hauser & Wirth.
Sophy Rickett's To The River (2010/11) is commissioned and produced by Elena Hill in partnership with Arnolfini and ArtSway, with additional support from the Arts and Humanities Research Council, Bath School of Art and Design, Howell Wong Costello, Wonderbox and Brancolini Grimaldi Gallery.
ArtSway's New Forest Pavilion is an international project funded by Arts Council England, the Arts University College at Bournemouth, with additional support from Hampshire County Council and assistance from a range of partners and co-commissioners: Elena Hill, Stour Valley Arts, Oriel Davies Gallery, Barker-Mill Foundation, Bath School of Art and Design, with sponsorship from Howard Wong Costello, Hallett Independent, Hauser & Wirth and IBID Projects. ArtSway is financially supported by Arts Council England, Hampshire County Council and New Forest District Council with additional support from trusts and foundations.
The Venice Biennale has for over a century been one of the most prestigious cultural institutions in the world. Ever since its foundation in 1895, it has been in the avant-garde, promoting new artistic trends and organising international events in contemporary arts. It is world-beating for the International Film Festival, for the International Art Exhibition and for the International Architecture Exhibition, and continues the great tradition of the Festival of Contemporary Music, the Theatre Festival, now flanked by the Festival of Contemporary Dance. The 54th International Art Exhibition, directed by Bice Curiger, runs from June 4th to November 27th, 2011 at the Giardini and Arsenale venues (Preview on June 1-2-3) and elsewhere around Venice. The show is titled ILLUMInazioni – ILLUMInations, and will be set up in the Central Pavilion at Giardini and at the Arsenale forming a single itinerary that will feature 82 artists from all over the world, including 32 young artists born after 1975, as well as 32 women artists.
For press images, interviews and further information, please contact Jack Lewis on: +44(0)1590 682260 (ext.6) or email: email@example.com