This publication documents a site-specific work by Giovanni Anselmo at the Carlo Scarpa space of the Querini Stampalia Foundation, in the framework of the Venice Biennale.The project takes the form of a route of trajectories and directions, weights and energies which represent five moments in which a meaning is implied: the visitors become participants. It is a work in progress because it is lived and lives through the viewer.
“Senza titolo, invisibile, dove le stelle si avvicinano di una spanna in più, mentre oltremare appare verso Sud-Est, e la luce focalizza… As is often the case with the works of Giovanni Anselmo, the lengthy title of the Venice exhibition is a long sequence, almost a short story, which describes the works we encounter. Above all, however, it is a succession of landscapes that open onto our imagination like windows. Anselmo is not presenting new works in Venice but the space in which he is showing them is new: the singular space at the Fondazione Querini Stampalia restored by Carlo Scarpa in 1960. Conceived by the Venetian architect entirely in stone, marble, cement and faux marbling, the exhibition and cultural meeting space is a unicum studied and planned in the minutest detail. Above all it is an architectural system designed in relation to the uniqueness of Venice, capable of dealing with the tide when it is too high. The architect designed a channel along the entire perimeter that the overflowing water can run into. It is an unusual space which constantly has to synchronise with the natural elements of the lagoon, changing its axis, following its breath. […] In keeping with this imperturbable artist and the radical spirit of his research, the project created for the Fondazione Querini Stampalia is precise, rigorous, linear and immense and completely respects the space designed by Carlo Scarpa, itself considered an installation which the artist contends with directly. Anselmo has designed invisible coordinates within which to reconsider the whole area, bearing in mind the intimate relationship and connection between the space and the cardinal points of the earth's axis. In the four works he has proposed, the artist puts into play time, energy, the force of gravity and magnetism; he refers to the finite and the infinite, the invisible and the visible, the whole and the detail…”
Published on the occasion of the eponymous exhibition, Fondazione Querini Stampalia, at the 57th International Exhibition of visual arts – La Biennale di Venezia, from May 10 to September 24, 2017.
Giovanni Anselmo (born 1934 in Borgofranco d'Ivrea, Italy, lives and works in Turin) made his debut within the Arte Povera movement, embarking on research aimed at bringing out the potential presence of the invisible in the visible, exposing the close relationship that exists between the finite and the infinite. He has formulated a personal dialectic which often sees the juxtaposition of materials with opposing values; through his works the energy inherent in the materials is unleashed. Each work arises from the manifestation in space and time of the compressed and potential powers which the elements arranged by the artist produce when they encounter each other.