Following the success of her exhibition Giraffe-Bottle-Gun at the 2009 53rd Venice Biennale, Judy Millar has been invited to exhibit again at the upcoming Venice Biennale. Millar, approached by Dutch curators Karlyn De Jongh & Sarah Gold will create a new work for the exhibition Personal Structures: Time, Space, Existence, a collateral event of the Biennale. The line up of artists is extraordinary and includes revered American minimalist Carl Andre and 'the mother of performance art' Marina Abramovic.
For Judy Millar, the opportunity to show again at the Venice Biennale and alongside Marina Abramovic has a "strange synchronicity" and is "simply unreal". Talking to her recently she noted that "sometimes life throws up strange synchronicities - my stay in New York on a residency at ISCP studios in early 2010 coincided with Marina Abramovic's huge retrospective at MOMA. As she was sitting in the gallery performing a work for the duration of the exhibition, I popped into MOMA almost daily to see her performance unfold. Her exhibition, and her presence at MOMA finished the day I left New York, so I felt that my stay in the city was somehow marked by her appearance. To now be invited to show alongside her is simply unreal."
Personal Structures: Time, Space, Existence will be on show at prestigious Venetian place Palazzo Bembo, located on the Grand Canal by the Rialto Bridge. Each artist has been nominated a room within the palace and will be creating new works for the show. Millar's work will integrate with the architectural elements of the space and her 3m meter tall canvas will literally fold out the palace window where it will be seen from the Grand Canal.
This is the first time a New Zealander has been invited to exhibit in this context and affirms Millar's international reputation which continues to gain momentum. Having already represented New Zealand at the Venice Biennale this opportunity is even more exciting for Millar. "When you exhibit in Venice you never expect it to happen again. I clearly remember holding the cards for hotels, restaurants and contacts I'd collected over the time of preparing the 2009 Biennale show and tossing them in the bin thinking I'd never need them again. To be asked to exhibit now in the 2011 Biennale is different, no longer having the responsibility of representing New Zealand but instead to be showing alongside an astonishing group of artists plucked from around the world, the experience feels different; and at least I now know where to buy a good coffee in the city."
In the lead up to this exhibition Millar will also be exhibiting new work in The Ring at Rohkunstbau, Berlin. The Ringis based on Wagner's The Ring of Nibelung and is particularly interesting for Millar, as a New Zealand artist because of its shared relationship to The Lord of the Rings. Aucklanders will be treated to a solo exhibition of new works at Gow Langsford Gallery opening on 29 March.
(images left to right: (one and two) working model for Venice 2011 project, Palazzo Bembo where Personal Structures: Time, Space, Existence will be shown, Millar's exhibition Giraffe-Bottle-Gun at La Maddalena during the 2009 Venice Biennale)
More about the Venice 2011 project:
Personal Structures: Time, Space, Existence will show artworks in an extraordinary combination and all works will relate to ideas of Time-Space-Existence. Within this a wide range of individual approaches will reflect the diversity of artists and artistic practices, while the different various cultures represented will make clear that the formal language the artists use is personal and not universal.
Each artist will exhibit in a room of the Palazzo Bembo and four additional spaces will be used to present a combination of single art works. The curators seek to present works that create a specific atmosphere within each given space and at the same time help to build a strong statement for the exhibition as a whole.
As a central part of the programme of Personal Structures: Time, Space, Existence is the exchange of ideas between artists, the exhibition at Palazzo Bembo will be supported by a symposium at the Venice Guggenheim in which all exhibiting artists will be invited to participate. Confirmed speakers at the symposium are Marina Abromovic and Joseph Kosuth.
Exhibiting artists include: Marina Abramovic (MNE), Carl Andre (USA), Zou Cao (CN), Toshikatsu Endo (JP), Hamish Fulton (UK), Johannes Girardoni (USA), Peter Halley (USA), Ma Jun (CN), Lee Ufan (ROK), Joseph Kosuth (USA), Melissa Kretschmer (USA), Tony Matelli (USA), Judy Millar (NZ), Tatsuo Miyajima (JP), Francois Morellet (FR), Hermann Nitsch (AT), Roman Opalka (FR), Thomas Pihl (NO), Andrew Putter (RSA), Arnulf Rainer (AT), Rene Rietmeyer (NL), Yuko Sakurai (JP), Sasaki (JP), SEO (ROK), Bill Viola (USA), Lawrence Weiner (USA), Xing Xin (CN).