Friday, January 13, 2012

Whisper on the Arts: Fondazione Zegna and Visible at the Serpentine, London

Home sick with the flu and figuring I'd better rest off before heading back out on the road again, I had to give this Zegna event a miss on Wednesday night, which is a shame because it looked pretty up my street. And so I share nonetheless...

London, January 11th, 2012 - The jury of the Visible Award, composed by Ute Meta Bauer - Associate Professor and Director of the Visual Arts Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge), Hans Ulrich Obrist - Director of International Projects at the Serpentine Gallery, Okwui Enwezor - Director of German art museum Haus der Kunst in Munich, Michelangelo Pistoletto for Cittadellarte - Pistoletto Foundation and Andrea Zegna for Fondazione Zegna, has assessed the winning project within a longlist of 15 proposals, selected by the curators of the award among 27 submitted projects. 

After an intense and long debate around the proposals the jurors selected a shortlist that includes the following project proposals:

Helena Producciones, "8 Festival de la Performance di Cali"
Nastio Mosquito, "Santa Claus is Going to Become an Immigrant"
Marinella Senatore, "Jammin' Drama Project"
Yangjiang Group, "Progressing from Invisible to Unnoticed"

Focusing and debating on the shortlist, the jurors finally decided to award the prize to the project by Helena Producciones, with the following motivation: The realization of a festival, in the specific context of Cali, in Colombia, conceived and run by artists, is a project built on a strong and precise transformative potential, which basis its action on an articulated relationship with the civic society of a local community. The activities will foster a sustainable relationship between international artistic practices, local needs and public demands, in that spirit of collective production of knowledge that the format of the festival can facilitate. The festival of performance is read as a long-term laboratory to experiment a diversity of models of civic imagination, where art is able to empower everyday life.

The Visible Award is an international production award of 25000 euros devoted to art work in the social sphere. This award is the second public step in a broader research project in contemporary art practices in the social sphere, which has been initiated by Cittadellarte ‐ Fondazione Pistoletto and Fondazione Zegna and curated by Matteo Lucchetti and Judith Wielander.

The Visible award is for those art projects – which have not yet been realised or are in their initial phases – that lead to involvement and interaction with particular urban or rural communities. These are projects that share an awareness of artistic production as an active element and agency in contemporary society, and with critical and future oriented aspirations. Projects with artistic approaches that, in a radical and proactive way, reconsider different models of economic development and the allocation of resources, access to information, and ecological and environmental needs, as well as experimenting with participatory and democratic political models. These processes create areas for reflection and mobilization, acting as a field of action within the public domain, in favor of a reading of participation that considers the social body as a potential power for bringing about responsible change.

In January 2012 it will be also launched the online platform, that will make available the book produced and all the proposal received by the invited artists, together with up-to-date news blog that will follow the winning project in its year of realization. The website will be online at the following address:

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