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Umm Kulthum faints on stageThe Cyprus Pavilion

Polys Peslikas - Umm Kulthum faints on stage
This catalogue brings together a series of contributions taking as inspiration Polys Peslikas's painting at the Cyprus Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale, in 2017.
Faint on stage? Umm Kulthum never did. It was the people who swooned when she sang. What if, overcome by the power of her song, the singer herself had passed out? What would have ensued during the sudden silence? Umm Kulthum faints on stage is the title Polys Peslikas coined for one of the paintings in his exhibition “The future of colour” at the Cyprus Pavilion during the 57th Venice Biennale in 2017. In this book, the title opens the stage for words to silently resound in the place of the work: stories and thoughts invited by Peslikas's paintings.
A retrospective meditation on the exhibition, this book aims to weave together the experience, motion, and feeling of what took place in the Cyprus Pavilion and the city spaces it occupied over the course of the project—Nicosia, Venice, Berlin, Oslo, London, Limassol. Initial versions of the interview, story, and poem reproduced in this volume were presented as part of the Cyprus Pavilion exhibition in the form of a broadsheet newspaper designed by Nienke Terpsma: a piece of punk existentialist poetry by the artist group Neoterismoi Toumazou; an interview of celebrated ceramist Valentinos Charalambous by pavilion curator Jan Verwoert, conducted during a visit to Nefertiti's bust at the Neues Museum in Berlin; and a short story by New York–based artist-writer Mirene Arsanios echoing the 1980s childhood experience of temporarily living in Cyprus with her family while fleeing conflict in her home country of Lebanon. Verwoert provides a contextual essay about the work of Peslikas.
Published on the occasion of the exhibition “The future of colour”, Cyprus Pavilion at the 57th International Exhibition of visual arts – La Biennale di Venezia, from May 13 to November 26, 2017.
The artistic practice of Polys Peslikas (born 1973 in Limassol, Cyprus, lives and works in London) centres on painting, proposing a meticulous relationship with the medium. Peslikas views the canvas as a space to negotiate the concept of time and often works with fragments of images and pre-existing elements within the realm of human activity and the history of art. In this context, he invents new relationships with existing narratives and incorporates these in his painting through references to other visual means. To understand painting, he often turns to other disciplines: he has collaborated with dance performers, taught in public schools, and formed part of the creative core of an art and culture publication, Ysterografo magazine, while curating solo and group shows of other artists. His most recent solo exhibitions have been held at Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin, and VOLKS, Nicosia. He has participated in numerous group shows, among others at Halle 14, Leipzig, NiMAC and Point Center for Contemporary Art, Nicosia. Peslikas represented Cyprus at the 57th Venice Biennale of Art.
Edited by Polys Peslikas and Jan Verwoert.
Contributions By Mirene Arsanios, Valentinos Charalambous, Louli Michaelidou, Neoterismoi Toumazou, Jan Verwoert.

Graphic design: Nienke Terpsma.

Published with the Cyprus Ministry of Education and Culture.
published in June 2021
English edition
14,5 x 23 cm (softcover)
80 pages (15 color ill.) + insert
ISBN : 978-3-95679-416-2
EAN : 9783956794162
in stock

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