Art Beyond the Venice Biennale

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After buying the Casa dei Tre Oci on the island of Giudeca in Venice last year for the institute that bears his name, investor and philanthropist Nicolas Berggruen announced in March that he had purchased another Venetian palace, Palazzo Diedo, for To accommodate a new cultural initiative: Berggruen Art & Culture, scheduled to open in 2024.

Currently, a work by American artist Sterling Ruby has been installed on the façade of Palazzo Diedo (best viewed from the San Antonio Bridge in front). Mario Codognato, the artistic director of Berggruen Arts & Culture, said during the visit that these four paintings were created by the artist to commemorate “the progress of the restoration, revitalizing the palace, which is already a hallmark of the occupation”. the first of these projects. Went to the palace earlier this month.

Mr. Codognato is also the director of the Anish Kapoor Foundation and the Manfrin Project, a new cultural centre envisioned by the British artist Anish Kapoor, who has ventured into the Venetian real estate market himself, buying Palazzo Priuli Manfrin as the basis for his own venture in Venice. headquarters. Mr Kapoor represented Britain at the 1990 Venice Biennale, so the foundation’s presence in Venice “marks a continuation of the city’s long history,” Mr Cordonato said.

While it’s still a construction site, Palazzo Manfrin will open to the public this week along with an exhibition at the Accademia Gallery in Venice, featuring old and recent works by Mr Kapoor. In Manflin, for example, a site-specific monumental piece, Mount Moriah at the gate of the ghetto, has taken up the ceiling of the entrance hall.

“I don’t know if a retrospective is appropriate, it’s more of an investigation of Anish’s work,” Mr Codognato said, including earlier works and never-before-seen sculptures made with a “substance” known as Kapoor Black so dark So much so that it absorbs more than 99.9 percent of visible light,” according to the gallery’s website.

“Contemporary art works really well in spaces that have their own history,” said Giulia Foscari, the architect responsible for preserving the Manfrin. Going forward, she said, many elements – such as the wallpaper or the wooden frames used for paintings that are long gone – will be preserved as traces of the palace’s storied past. But before it was closed to the public on Nov. 9 for further work, “the idea was to show that we were on a construction site,” she said.

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