Tuesday, 23 June 2009
Today we started the lengthy process of repackaging and sending the Travelling Light works back to their eagerly awaiting creators. We hope they get home by the end of the week (international entries will take a little longer of course) and in good condition! Feeling a bit sad sending it all back, we hope the art has enjoyed its journey, it's been a brilliant experience for us and we look forward to the next Venice Biennale, 2011...
Monday, 22 June 2009
We apologise for the delay in returning work to the Travelling Light artists as both Chiara and Debra have been laid up all week with a swine of a 'flu. Debra was slightly concerned that her visit to the Mexican pavilion may have been responsible for her condition, Chiara decided she was invincible, but alas has also been struck with the beastly plague. After a week in quarantine in Chav-on-Sea, East Sussex, the two have been making a Victorian seaside recovery. Please refrain from painting red crosses on the gallery door as we are no longer contagious. All work will be posted this week. We thank you for your patience.
Sunday, 21 June 2009
For many members of the team, Travelling Light gave them their first ever visit to Venice and so, on Thursday afternoon, it was with mixed emotions that we made our way back to the airport...sad to be leaving, happy about the success of show, exhilarated by a week filled with new encounters and opportunities and most of all, exhausted...
At Marco Polo, we arrived to find our flight delayed by 3 hours, and so we amused ourselves with backgammon and food, eventually getting back to Hackney at 2am...Travelling Light never felt so heavy!
Saturday, 20 June 2009
Above: after carefully packing away Travelling Light, getting the palazzo's pictures and furniture back into place caused anxiety and OCD for some members of the team as we awaited the agency's inspection.
The show came to a premature end, hours before schedule, because an off-duty policeman who knew the owner of the palazzo, wandered in...we were informed that what we were doing was illegal and that the show must come down immediately or else we would face a heavy fine.
Although the exhibition was an official collateral event listed by the British Council on the Biennale Art map (http://www.artupdate.com/), the venue itself hadn't been registered by the owner for use as a public space...we must have forgotten to mention it...
Back on March 27th, we met Daniel Birnbaum at the Biennale press conference in London and when we asked him the secret to becoming a curator of the Venice Biennale, he told us, "just have lots of parties, with art".
So, in the end, Daniel saved the day as we able to quote him on the police statement, declaring: "we held a party with art", therefore, not breaking any laws, pacifying the authorities and retaining some of our original guerilla integrity.
Our party was a great success with lots of surprise visitors, including many of the Travelling Light artists. Using the bookcase/mezzanine as their stage, we were treated to a set by musician Alberto Grollo, accompanied by two violinists and spoon player! The music gave us pause to reflect on what we'd achieved and proved a bit too much for some team members...the party ran on long after 9pm, with Debra giving an impromptu midnight tour of the show to a passing group of German collectors!
More pictures on the website: www.wilsonwilliamsgallery.com/venice.htm
Today the show opened, the curators gave a talk to assembled guests and press, about how the whole project came to be. It is very exciting to finally be open and part of the Venice Biennale! A steady stream of visitors started at 10am sharp and we look forward to the main party tomorrow...