Arrivederci: Venice Biennale Draws To A Close Artlyst Final Roundup

Venice Biennale 2015

With less than a week to go before the Venice Biennale draws to a close (ending 22 November) here is a reminder of the pavilions and collateral exhibitions that Artlyst enjoyed. Most are still open. 

The official artists for the core exhibition of the 56th Venice Biennale are still on view. The exhibition titled,“All the World’s Futures,” curated by Okwui Enwezor was politically charged and socially aware. For over a century, the Venice Biennale has been one of the most prestigious cultural events in the world. Founded in 1895, it has promoted the avant-garde, spotting new artistic trends and organising international events in the contemporary arts in accordance with a multi-disciplinary model, which characterises its unique nature. This edition of the Venice event has has seen a record number of visitors, as well as a positive response from the media and public.


Sarah Lucas’ spectacular yellow British pavilion entitled I SCREAM DADDIO. Here’s Artlyst’s opinion:

Sarah Lucas’ British Pavilion was strong both in visuals and concept. The yellow painted walls made the sculpture appear to float in golden sunshine or was it vitrines of golden shower fluid. The sculptures came in two styles big yellow balloon forms depicting Franz West like human forms and plaster caster women bending over with cigarettes protruding out of their butt holes and vaginas. On second and third viewing it remained one of the strongest presentations at the Biennale.

Other memorable pavilions in the Giardini were the quirky Canadian recreated Dep shop, the stylish migrant themed Belgian pavilion, Joan Jonas’ videos for USA and the room of suspended keys from Japan.


The Arsenale offered a much more pleasurable and leisurely experience. Slovenia, Singapore, Ireland were all country displays to look out for but the most spectacular was Ibrahim Tamale’s walkway. Tamale, born in Ghana, was recently on Artlyst’s top 10 of artists under 30 to look out for.

Sean Lynch, representing Ireland, is presenting ‘Adventure Capitol’ a large site specific installation entitled ‘Adventure: Capital’ that traces a journey from myth to minimalism around Ireland and Britain. 


Away from the main two locations, Wales Is represented by Helen Sear presenting her collateral event titled, ‘The Rest Is Smoke’ curated by Ffotogallery. Her practice can be characterised by her exploration of the crossover between photography and fine art, her focus on the co-existence of the human, animal, and natural worlds.

Other collateral events to look our for are and still on show are:


Sean Scully – Land Sea at Palazzao Falier

Artlyst’s view:

The loose, expressive gestural, horizontal brush strokes of the Landline paintings in blues, greens and grey matches the movement of the water on the canal while the structure of the buildings are echoed in the Doric paintings with their mix of vertical and horizontal rectangles.


Graham Fagen: Scotland & Venice at Palazzo Fontana

Graham’s work explores recurring artistic themes include plants, journeys, poetry and popular song as a means to focus on personal and shared experience and identity. His works offer a clear-sighted perspective on the powerful forces that shape our lives.

Patricia Cronin –Shrine For Girls

The work is presented inside the exquisite 16th Century Chruch of San Gallo. For this site spesific installation Patricia collected girls clothing for over twenty years and arranged them on the alters of the church.

Frontiers Reimagined at the Museo de Palazzo Grimani

Frontiers Reimagined examines the results of these cultural entanglements through the work of forty-four painters, sculptors, photographers, and installation artists who are exploring the notion of cultural boundaries.

Artlyst also enjoyed Peter Doig at the Palazzetto Tito which sadly closed at the beginning of October.

Artlyst’s view:

In all of Doig’s paintings you are aware of the many layers and pigments he uses to build up the surface.  The natural light from the leaded windows at the Palazzetto Tito enhance this experience.

Words: Sara Faith Photos: P C Robinson © Artlyst 2015