Artists from all over the world…
…present their works at the central international exhibition “Viva Arte Viva”. Paolo Baratta, president of Biennale Venice, defines it this way: “The theme of the 57th exhibition is encounter and dialogue”. He underscores that the 85 country pavilions wreathing the central exhibition designed by curator Christine Macel “reinforce the pulsating diversity of the participating voices which is the hallmark of the Biennale of Venice”.
Witness of humanity
Macel herself adds: “In view of today’s worldwide conflicts, art bears eloquent witness to the better things which make us human.” Her concept of the exhibition at the Arsenal and Central Pavilion in the gardens unfolds organically from the nine Trans-Pavilions like chapters in a book.
Christa Steinle, commissioner of the Austria Pavilion, decided on Brigitte Kowanz and Erwin Wurm as Austria’s contribution to the Biennale. Thus, two artistic views which have expanded and evolved our understanding of sculpture in significant ways for more than 30 years.
Brigitte Kowanz uses light as language, as a code. She works with pure light as an independent medium the way earlier painters used paint. Her work for the Austrian Pavilion is the apex, the point of culmination of her own set of instruments, the deployment of neon light, of mirrors, of reflecting metals. of script, of code, of information. (Peter Weibel, from: Biennale-Katalog Brigitte Kowanz, 2017)
It is the task of sculpture to enhance our perceptions of space. Our old perceptions, which stemmed from classic sculpture, concentrated on the body. Our new perceptions, on the other hand, focus on machines and media. Erwin Wurm is one of the few artists who has infused spatial art with a new perception of space itself, in which the vectors of mobility and immobility become variable. (Peter Weibel, from: Biennale-Katalog Erwin Wurm, 2017)
57th International Art Exhibition
La Biennale di Venezia 2017
Kommissärin: Christa Steinle
Im Auftrag des Bundeskanzleramts Österreich