Our Offices Abroad

Alain Berset to open Swiss Pavilion in Venice on Friday

The exhibition of the Swiss contribution at the 57th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia will be opened on Friday 12 May by the Federal Councillor Alain Berset at Giardini della Biennale. Curator of the Swiss Pavilion Philipp Kaiser, nominated by the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia, has invited the Geneva-born American Carol Bove and the Swiss American artist duo Teresa Hubbard / Alexander Birchler to show their work in the exhibition «Women of Venice» in reference to the legacy and universe of Alberto Giacometti.

Federal Councillor Alain Berset is due to open the Swiss Pavilion at the Biennale Arte 2017 on Friday afternoon at the Giardini della Biennale. The Venice Biennale, one of the most important platforms worldwide for contemporary art, regularly attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors. The 57th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, entitled «VIVA ARTE VIVA», is curated by Christine Macel and includes 85 national participations in the historic Pavilions at the Giardini, at the Arsenale and in the old town of Venice.

The Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia, responsible for the Swiss contributions to the Venice Biennale,  nominated Philipp Kaiser to curate the exhibition at the Pavilion of Switzerland in 2017. Having started his career in Switzerland, the freelance curator from Bern now works in Los Angeles, California, and retains close links to the Swiss art scene. His exhibition «Women of Venice» refers to the little known absence of Alberto Giacometti from the Swiss Pavilion at the Venice Biennale. Set in the Pavilion of Switzerland, which was built in 1952 by Alberto’s brother, the renowned architect Bruno Giacometti, it features new work by Carol Bove and Teresa Hubbard / Alexander Birchler created specifically for the Biennale Arte 2017. With the exhibition, Kaiser intends to explore concepts of national identity as well as issues of cultural policy.

In parallel with the exhibition at the Swiss Pavilion, the Swiss Arts Council organises its «Salon Suisse», entitled «ATARAXIA» and located at Palazzo Trevisan degli Ulivi. It opens tomorrow, Thursday, 11 May, and comprises a series of talks and events. The programme will take place throughout the opening event and the three subsequent weekends. Already in its sixth edition, «Salon Suisse» is this year run by Koyo Kouoh, founding artistic director of RAW Material Company in Senegal. She lives and works in Dakar, Luanda and Basel. «ATARAXIA» aims to consider the mythologisation of «Switzerland as a country without problems» and the disparity between the representation and the realities of this construct.

Also supported by the Swiss Art Council Pro Helvetia, Swiss artists Heidi Bucher and Julian Charrière are among the 120 artists presented in the main exhibition at the Arsenale. The Venice Biennale is open until 26 November.

Media information: Marlène Mauris, Communication
+41 44 267 71 36, mmauris@prohelvetia.ch

Further information and press images are available on www.biennials.ch

Media Release of the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia, 10.05.2017