Blog / Best of Venice: Iraq, Bangladesh Pavilions and more

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Each morning, we eagerly check our email to find out how Nasher Museum Director Kim Rorschach and Trevor Schoonmaker, curator of contemporary art, are faring at the Venice Biennale. Through quick iPhone communiques, they share exciting works of art and installations around Venice that have caught their attention.

Day One: Kim and Trevor covered the Arsenale and main pavilion in the Giardini, the gardens in east Venice. They took in the Iraq and Bangladesh pavilions, both off site, and brilliantly curated by Mary Angela Schroth, sister of Nasher Museum Senior Curator Sarah Schroth. They were drawn in to the Bangladesh pavilion by Kabir Ahmed Masum Chisty’s umbrella installation at the entrance. Like just about everyone else, they were blown away by Christian Marclay’s video “The Clock.” Another standout was Urs Fischer’s wax sculptures, which continue to melt until the limbs drop off. Today and tomorrow they’ll get to the national pavilions and other sites.

Kim’s notes: “We loved Adel Abidin’s video (above) “Consumption of War” where wonky Americans reenact a Star Wars-type battle using flourescent tubes and other bureaucratic office trappings. Other things that caught our eye at the Arsenale include Urs Fischer’s melting take on Giambologna (photo below) and works by South African artist Nicholas Hlobo; also videos by Dani Gal and Mohamed Bourouissa. … At the main pavilion we were drawn to Mexican artist Gabriel Kuri’s funny and inventive sculpture installation–see his “Rocks and Socks” piece below. Omer Fast’s video also stood out.” (Follow @KimRorschach on Twitter.)

Trevor’s notes: On Adel Abidin’s video “Consumption of War,” “Strong political commentary, terrific use of film conventions and a lot of fun.”

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