Speech matters

Informazioni Evento

Fondamenta dell'Arsenale , Venezia, Italia
Dal al

ore 18-22

Sito web: http://www.danish-pavilion.org
Agency, Ayreen Anastas, Rene Gabri, Robert Crumb, Zhang Dali, Stelios Faitakis, Fos, Sharon Hayes, Han Hoogerbrugge, Mikhail Karikis, Thomas Kilpper, Runo Lagomarsino
Katerina Gregos
arte contemporanea, collettiva

Il progetto Speech matters rappresenterà la Danimarca alla Biennale di Venezia.

Comunicato stampa

Freedom of speech is one of the key issues in the current public debate and one that is becoming increasingly contested, given the steady erosion of civil liberties in many countries today. Denmark has always been at the forefront of the public debate on issues in relation to freedom of speech, but it has also suffered the so-called "trauma of free speech".

This makes the Danish Pavilion an appropriate vehicle from which to visualise and discuss these issues. Freedom of speech is highly relevant in relation to much of what is happening in the world politically today; from press intimidation and censorship, to restrictions on the internet, as well as debates on the limits of freedom of speech, increased surveillance and forms of control. The issue of freedom of speech is highly complex, often subjective - even relative - and invariably debatable. The boundaries surrounding it cannot easily be delineated.

The exhibition Speech Matters aims to provoke a considered debate and to complicate the issue of freedom of speech, highlighting the intricacies, ambiguities and grey areas inherent to the subject, and emphasizing the fact that freedom of speech cannot be exercised or applied in any programmatic or strictly proscribed manner. Finally, the exhibition also touches on the essence of visual artistic practice, which fundamentally entails conditions of freedom of expression. Eighteen artists from ten countries have been invited to participate. The majority will be producing new work for the exhibition.

The exhibition is curated by Katerina Gregos.
AGENCY (International, est. 1992)
AYREEN ANASTAS & RENE GABRI (Palestine, 1968 & Iran, 1968)
FOS (Denmark, 1971)
HAN HOOGERBRUGGE (Netherlands, 1963)
MIKHAIL KARIKIS (Greece, 1975)
THOMAS KILPPER (Germany, 1956)
RUNO LAGOMARSINO (Argentina/Sweden, 1977)
TALA MADANI (Iran, 1981)
JAN ŠVANKMAJER (Czech Republic, 1934)
TILMAN WENDLAND (Germany, 1969)
ZHANG DALI (China, 1963)

coming soon

Apart from the exhibition inside the Danish Pavilion, this year emphasis has also been placed on the public dimension of Denmark's representation in Venice, especially in light of the context of the Venice Biennale, which does not classify as an entirely public or open space. By its very definition, freedom of speech is negotiated in relation to the public, so extending beyond the confines of the exhibition in the Pavilion has been an important component of Speech Matters. To, therefore, counteract the reality of the more rarefied space that is the Giardini during the Biennale, this year the Danish Pavilion includes several public projects.

Firstly, FOS' Osloo is a floating pavilion positioned at the island of San Servolo, which consists of three formal elements: a bar, a radio station and a stage designed to host a programme of events, which is freely accessible to all (further information is enclosed in this press kit). Osloo extends the presence of Denmark outside the Giardini area to what is a genuinely public space.

Secondly, Thomas Kilpper has constructed a structure entitled Pavilion for Revolutionary Free Speech in and beyond the private garden of the Danish Pavilion. This anti-pavilion which aims to challenge the official, permanent architectonic structure of the Danish pavilion and its orthodox, established symbolic value – is a temporary, informal structure and meeting point, which is adjacent to the two more formal modernist and neo-classical buildings that together constitute the Danish Pavilion. Kilpper's pavilion will also host Speakers' Corner, an open space consisting of a raised balcony where a series of specially commissioned language-based performances by Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen and Mikhail Karikis will take place during the opening days. Speakers' Corner borrows its name from the original in Hyde Park, London, a space where individuals or groups freely adopt the right to speak – and a tradition that goes back to the nineteenth century and the Chartist workers' movement. Speakers' Corner is an integral part of Kilpper's pavilion, which is dedicated to revolutionary free speech. Kilpper will also instigate his own programme of lectures, encounters and events beyond the opening days of the Biennale.

Thirdly, Stelios Faitakis has realised an ambitious, large-scale mural entitled Imposition Symphony specially commissioned for the façade of the neo-classical building of the Danish Pavilion. The work unfolds in six chapters – each chapter representing a distinct story – with one 'interlude'. Its main narrative revolves around six episodes, all relating to questions of freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and incidents of censorship and oppression, both contemporary and historical.

And, finally, Johannes af Tavsheden has organised a series of walks in the Giardini. On behalf of af Tavsheden, who wishes to remain anonymous, the artists Ayreen Anastas and Rene Gabri will be conducting these walks discussing the work and ideas of Johannes af Tavsheden. This performative walk will attempt to outline some of the issues af Tavsheden has been preoccupied with, ranging from various histories of the notion of free speech to his desire to connect thought to action. The walk will also put these questions in direct relation to artistic practice today, the context of the biennale and the notion of national representation in an era of transnational semio-capitalism.

Speakers' Corner
Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen and Mikhail Karikis will perform daily on Speakers' Corner throughout the opening days of the Venice Biennale 1-4 June 2011
• Daily Schedule:
15.00 Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen; duration of performance: 15 mins.
15.30 Mikhail Karikis; duration of performance: 15 mins.

Pavilion for Revolutionary Free Speech
Workshop on the topic of revolutionary free speech 24-25 June 2011

• The workshop will take place in Thomas Kilpper's Pavilion for Revolutionary Free Speech located in the garden area of the Danish Pavilion.
• Schedule:
24 June, 14.00-18.00
25 June, 11.00-18.00

Participants include: Regina Wamper (Germany, sociologist/political scientist), Salah Methnani (Tunisia, journalist, writer and translator), Gaspár M. Tamás (Hungary, philosopher) and Salong – student group from the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich, who will do an anti-capitalist noise-performance.

Walking Tour through Giardini by Johannes af Tavsheden
Performed by Ayreen Anastas and Rene Gabri

• The walks take place daily on 1-5 June and 9-11 June 2011 at 11.00
• Meeting point in front of the Danish Pavilion
• Duration approximately 1.5 hours
• The tour is limited to 25 people
• Please sign up at the Danish Pavilion or show up just before 11.00 when the walks can be joined on a first come, first served basis.

Osloo – A Public Place In Venice By FOS

Osloo is a floating pavilion comprising a Bar, a Daily Event Programme and a Radio Station
31 May – 1 July 2011
Island of San Servolo, Venice, next to the vaporetto stop.
Open Daily 14.00-22.00

As a truly public space, Osloo is located outside the designated space of the Danish Pavilion in the Giardini, and is instead located within the urban fabric of the city of Venice, docked at the island of San Servolo. Osloo is an architectonic structure and a social space that comes to life through a range of events and audience encounters. The programme on Osloo aims to break traditional borders between disciplines and explores the possibility of exchanging information in a public space through an aesthetic framework. International artists, musicians and poets will perform alongside researchers, politicians, art historians, and other public figures in order to create a set of alternative social situations and exchanges. Osloo is a remaking of the pavilion Oslo from 1999, which was the first work that put FOS’ artistic concept of 'Social Design' into physical form. Osloo is closely aligned to the tradition of relational aesthetics, but takes its starting point in the socio-political context of contemporary society. On Osloo each night of events is programmed in relation to both the title of the evening and the overall theme of Osloo, which is ‘Language’. Throughout its duration more events will be added to the programme and every day Osloo will be providing the setting for improvised activities and informal social interaction. For four-and-a-half weeks this regular programme of free public events will function as an accessible space for the citizens of Venice and tourists as well as Biennale visitors. The bar Osloo is open every day from 14.00 to 22.00.

Location of Osloo
Osloo, San Servolo, Venice, next to the vaporetto stop 31 May – 1 July, 2011

Public Transport
Vaporetto line 20 departs from Riva degli Schiavoni, San Marco and San Zaccaria stops. The boat ride takes approximately 10 mins.


For a full programme of events see: www.osloo.dk – updated daily.

For a daily update on current events call +39 3421291543.

Venice Biennale Opening Days
31 May – 4 June 2011

• Tuesday 31 May: Kick–off (18.00-22.00)
Rastafari H.C. Andersen (speech)
Concert by Hype Williams (Great Britain)

• Wednesday 1 June: One Language Traveler (18.00-22.00)
Lars Bang Larsen (Denmark, art critic) on Hélio Oiticica (lecture)
Michalis Pichler (Germany/Greece) sings Der Einzige und sein Eigentum (performance)
Tuomas Toivonen (Finland) performs One Language Traveler (music)

• Thursday 2 June: A Collection of Centres (11.00-23.00)
11.00-13.00 (guest lecture): What are the components needed to create a good platform for intercultural dialogue and art? A round table discussion organized by Tijana Miškovi (Denmark/ Former Yugoslavia, art producer and curator), Tine Bundgaard (Denmark, artistic director and curator SAIR), Michelle Eistrup (Denmark/Jamaica, visual artist and curator), Georges. H. Rabbath (Lebanon, curator) and Sithabile Mlotshwa (Zimbabwe/ Holland, Director of Thamgadi Foundation).
16.00-22.00: Henrik Plenge Jacobsen (Denmark, visual artist) performs Eierstock (performance) From Processology to Neo-Relationalism – chaos to consensus (panel debate on Neo-Relations) by Gallery D.O.R: Kristian Øverland Dahl, Steinar Haga Kristensen and Sverre Gullesen (Belgium/Norway) (performance)
DJ Fari Bradley (London-based Lebanese DJ, broadcaster and multi-disciplinary artist)

• Friday 3 June: A Financial Erotic Act (19.00-22.00)
The sex life of snails by David Salomon (Denmark/France, visual artist) (lecture)
Father Murphy (Italy) (concert)
Dorit Chrysler (Austria) performs The Theremin (concert)
Jesper Just (Denmark, visual artist) performs A Financial Erotic Act (performance)

• Saturday 4 June: Frontière et le Territoire (15.00-22.00)
Rio Bravo (Denmark) has put together the programme for the day. They have invited:
Model court (Great Britain, artist group) (performance)
A police band from Venice (Italy) (concert)
DJ STRA (Italy) Fusion Arabic (DJ set)
POF! Champagne (Italy), Fundance electronic concert (concert)

Throughout June: 5 June – 1 July
Amongst others: Awesome Tapes from Africa (USA) aka. Brian Shimkovitz, tape cassette DJ set with sounds from Africa; Reading by Cia Rinne (Sweden, poet); Collecting identities: I stay therefore I am by La Collezione di Carrozzeria Margot (Italy, gallery and artist collective), mimesis of a film production in 12 acts wherein the audience is involved in various ways; reading by Etel Adnan (Lebanon/USA, visual artist and poet); Enrico Malatesta (Italy, artist and musician) performance on drums; Revolution of the Mind, discussion with Fari Bradley (London-based broadcaster and multi-disciplinary artist) and Georges Rabbath (Lebanon, curator); Gamers in Exile (Italy) progressive electronica concert; Jooklo duo troglosound (Italy) free jazz concert; Lucky Dragons (US, collaborative music group) 12 hours video and sound performance; The Danish experimental record company ESCHO invites Thulebasen (Denmark, avantgarde band); Trentemøller (Denmark, electronica DJ) moist electro of the first degree.

Recurring events at Osloo
Translation: A Series of Double Translations: Language is a system of references and each language has its own. A number of subjects and their translations through different languages will be presented and discussed.
Mix Tape: 30 different musicians and artists are invited to make a mix tape: Mix Tape will represent and express music as a unifying force: we unify Italia through the radio Grotta Nuova at Osloo.
One Language Traveler: For One Language Traveler different musicians have been asked to make ‘music for the now’ on Osloo – and more specifically to create a “film score” around the ‘now’.

Danish Pavilion, 54th Venice Biennale 2011

The Danish Arts Council Committee for International Visual Art.

The Danish Arts Council Committee for International Visual Arts serves as Commissioner for the Danish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, where Denmark has taken part since 1895. In compliance with its intention to consider Danish art in an international perspective, it is the aim of the Danish Arts Council Committee for International Visual Arts that the Danish Pavilion, through innovative artistic and curatorial practices, reflects upon the position of contemporary art in a globalized art world as well as the position of the Venice Biennale in this ever-changing art world.

The Danish Arts Council Committee for International Visual Arts consists of Christine Buhl Andersen (Chairman), Eva Koch, Mikael Andersen, Jakob Jakobsen, Gitte Ørskou (1 April 2007 - 31 March 2011) and Rune Gade (Chairman), Jesper Elg, Mads Gamdrup, Lise Harlev, Anna Krogh (1 April 2011 - 31 March 2015).

The project is funded by the Danish Art Council.

Katerina Gregos

Katerina Gregos is a curator and writer based in Brussels, Belgium. She is currently co-curator of the 4. Fotofestival Mannheim_Ludwigshafen_Heidelberg, in Germany (forthcoming September 2011), part of the curatorial team for Manifesta 9 (forthcoming June 2012, Province of Limburg, Belgium) and curator of Newtopia: The State of Human Rights (forthcoming, Mechelen, Belgium, September 2012). Previously, she served as artistic director of Argos - Centre for Art & Media, Brussels and director of the Deste Foundation, Centre for Contemporary Art, Athens where she organised numerous exhibitions. As an independent curator Gregos has also curated numerous exhibitions internationally including, among others, Hidden in Remembrance is the Silent Memory of Our Future, Contour 2009 - The 4th Biennial for Moving Image, in Mechelen, Belgium (2009); Give(a)way: on Generosity, Giving, Sharing and Social Exchange, the 6th Biennial E V+ A: Exhibition of Visual Art, Limerick, Ireland (2006). Other projects include Leaps of Faith: An International Arts Project for the Green Line and the City of Nicosia, Cyprus (2005), the first international contemporary art exhibition to take place on both sides of the divided city, and Channel Zero, for the Netherlands Media Art Institute, Amsterdam (2004). Katerina Gregos regularly publishes on art and artists in magazines, books and exhibition catalogues, and is a frequent speaker in international conferences.

Project Coordinator
Helga Just Christoffersen

Project Owner
Anette Østerby, director, the Visual Arts Centre, the Danish Arts Agency

Project Manager
Lotte S. Lederballe Pedersen, the Danish Arts Agency

Project Assistant
Naja Rasmussen

Project Interns
Katrine Møllebæk
Christine Tommerup

Coordinator and Technical Advisor in Venice

Troels Bruun, Architect
Annapaola Passarini, Coordinator

Luca Delise, Architect
Roberta Facchettin, Accountant
Daniela Murgia, Studio Manager
Augustin Schoenmaeckers, Architect

Head of installations
Emil Krøyer

Visual Identity and Design

Stefano Cernuschi, coordinator
Studio Mousse, design

International Media Relations
Goldmann Public Relations
Judith Eckstein
Bruderstr. 5, D-80538 Munich
E: [email protected]
T: +49 (0) 89 2111640
F: +49 (0) 89 211 164-29

Danish Media Relations
The Danish Arts Agency
Marianne Strøm Hansen
H.C. Andersens Boulevard 2
DK-1553 Copenhagen V
E: [email protected]
T: +45 3374 4572

Press Release 20 May 2011 English
Press Release 20 May 2011 Italian
Press Release 20 May 2011 Danish
Press Release 15 Mar 2011
e-flux announcement 11 May 2011
e-flux announcement 8 Nov 2010

Commissioner's Statement
Curatorial Statement
The Artists
The Curator
Public Projects
Colophon and Sponsors

The Danish Pavilion wishes to thank the following for their generous and kind support:

Messieurs Spyros & Philip Niarchos, Beckett-Fonden, Carlsberg, Montana, The Flemish Government Agency for Arts and Heritage, Mondriaan Foundation, Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen e.V, and Vidisquare.

The works by Stelios Faitakis and Mikhail Karikis are realised through the generous support of messieurs Philip & Spyros Niarchos.

Beckett-Fonden is the sole sponsor of Speakers' Corner.

Individual artist presentations in Speech Matters have been supported by:

Andersen's Contemporary, Copenhagen; The Breeder, Athens; Pilar Corrias Gallery, London; Culture Pro- gramme of the European Union; dispari&dispari projects, Reggio Emilia; DsV; Gagosian Gallery; Nonino Distillatori; Hammerthor; Patrick Heide Contemporary Art, London; If I Can't Dance, I Don't Want To Be Part of Your Revolution, Amsterdam; Kvadrat; Landeshauptstadt München Kulturreferat; Wilfried Lentz Gallery, Rotterdam; Lightbox; Lombard-Freid Projects, New York; Montana; Galerie Christian Nagel, Cologne/Berlin; Nastro Azzurro; Messieurs Spyros & Philip Niarchos; Radiolina; Almine Rech Gallery, Paris/Brussels; Salong; Showroom, London; Max Wigram Gallery, London.

Professional Preview
1 - 3 June 2011

Press accreditation for the professional preview is administered by the Venice Biennale.
For press accreditation please contact the Venice Biennale directly.

Press Preview
The Danish Pavilion, Giardini, at 11:30 on Thursday, 2 June 2011

The Danish Pavilion, Giardini, at 15:30 on Thursday, 2 June 2001

Speech Matters will open to the public on Sunday, 4 June 2011 at the Giardini, Venice as part of the 54th Venice Biennale, and remain on view through 27 November 2011.

Pubblic Project