GLASSTRESS 2019, Biënnale van Venetië

Venetië (IT)
09 May - 24 November 2019

At the 58th Venice Biennale, GLASSTRESS will present an impressive array of glass art by top artists from all over the world. Honouring ten years of GLASSTRESS and thirty years of Berengo Studio, curators Koen Vanmechelen and Vik Muniz have selected more than fifty delicate artworks.

At the 58th Venice Biennale, GLASSTRESS will present an impressive array of glass art by top artists from all over the world. Honouring ten years of GLASSTRESS and thirty years of Berengo Studio, curators Koen Vanmechelen and Vik Muniz have selected more than fifty delicate artworks.

“The sixth edition of GLASSTRESS returns to its historical roots on Murano,” says Belgian curator and artist Koen Vanmechelen. The old abandoned glass furnace functions as an exhibition space for striking, new works and installations by returning artists Ai Weiwei, Tony Cragg and Thomas Schütte. Co-curator and Brazilian artist Vik Muniz invites, among others, first-time participants Prune Nourry, José Parlá and Xavier Veilhan to investigate how glass redefines our perception of space.

In another part of the exhibition, Vanmechelen shows a multi-faceted story about the evolution of contemporary glass art, via a careful selection of Berengo works from the past ten years. His eclectic choice, with as its central theme migration, is thematically exhibited in various spaces. The collection contains enigmatic works by Javier Perez, Erwin Wurm, Jean Arp, Jaume Plensa, Ai Weiwei and Mat Collishaw. Vanmechelen: “Artists are part of today’s displaced and expropriated peoples. They were attracted by the eternal fire of the Berengo glassworks, sparking their passion to create a work that reveals and releases the spirit of our time.”

In addition to curating the exhibition, Vanmechelen also presents his own work: a series of new sculptures dedicated to the concept of human rights. The encyclopedias of Human Rights, combined with a book containing the DNA sequence of his famous Cosmopolitan Chicken Project, contain various glass elements, all recurring symbols in the artist's work, that reveal the delicate balance between nature and culture. The works also refer to Vanmechelen's Human Rights Pavilion, a work of art initiated during the Biennale that will take shape over its two-year world tour across nearly all continents. In 2021, the resulting OPUS will be presented at the 59th Biennale as an appeal to the world and possibly as the start of a recurring international human rights pavilion.

EXHIBITION FACTS
Glasstress
Fondazione Berengo Art Space
Campiello Della Pescheria, Murano
More information at

www.glasstress.org