[Ben Lewis] I’ve had an amazing week at the Venice Beinnale 2011. What a collection of extraordinary installations, museum quality shows, and bizarre artist happenings have greeted me every day of the week. I’m in the Australian…
Do you want there to be sort of meanings or narratives in your sculpture?
[Hany Armanious – Australian Pavilion] No, I want complete emptiness.
[Ben Lewis] Why?
[HA] Because I think that’s the most comfortable place to be, especially with art.
[Misheck Masamvu – Zimbabwe Pavilion] For me as an artist, as much as you are reaching out to everybody else, you know, you need to be aware who are you, before everything else comes in.
[Christian Boltanski – French Pavilion] Every day there is 200,000 more people on earth.
[Ben Lewis] What, this number?
[BL] This is all the people who are being born, is it, up there?
Each year, the Biennale is run by a different international curator who picks a theme under which to unify or at least cohere the enormous diversity of work that he or she selects. This time the curator is BJ Curiger, and the theme is Illuminations.
You Russian artists, you love this sort of over the top church/rave/circus atmosphere.
[Hermes Zygott – Russian Pavilion] We live by living through our emotions. That’s what life is all about.
[BL] What is the artistic algorithm behind these search results?
[BL] So can you tell me what you’ve actually built?
[Ayse Erkmen – Turkish Pavilion] I have built a water cleaning system. We don’t serve it to the people, we give it back to the canal.
[BL] Why don’t you serve it to the people?
[AE] Because that would have been too much a solution.
[BL] They are just about to do a photocall outside the German Pavilion, because the Germans are the surprise winners of this year’s Venice Biennale. There is someone trying to make a noise through this horn.
[Visitor] Well, it’s made for it, isn’t it!
[BL] Oh, you’ve got it there, you’ve got the angle right. What do you think of the Biennale?
[Visitor] I’d say that it’s quite interesting.
[BL] Quite interesting?
[Visitor] Yeah. Don’t you?
[BL] In the past two or three days, you’ve probably done 20 or 30 interviews.
[Artists] This is our last one.