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60th International Art Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia

20 April - 24 November 2024
(Pre-opening: 17, 18 and 19 April)

Stranieri Ovunque - Foreigners Everywhere

Curator: Adriano Pedrosa

List of the 331 participants

87 National Participations

30 Collateral Events

Awards, 60th Int. Art Exhibition

Practical information
Opening hours, tickets online, contacts

Exhibitions in Venice
National participations, collateral events and other exhibitions outside the Arsenale and the Giardini

Works by 122 participants in the international exhibition Stranieri Ovunque - Foreigners Everywhere, presented as a tour with 230 photos in the sequence of Adriano Pedrosa's curatorial concept.

More photo tours - see below
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Foreigners Everywhere

Stranieri Ovunque - Foreigners Everywhere is the title and theme of the 60th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia 2024, curated by Adriano Pedrosa.

The International Exhibition takes place in the Central Pavilion (Giardini) and in the Arsenale. With a total of 331 participants, it will feature two sections: the Nucleo Contemporaneo and the Nucleo Storico.

The Biennale also includes 87 National Participations in the historic Pavilions at the Giardini, at the Arsenale and in the city centre of Venice.

Works by Claire Fontaine and Yinka Shonibare at the entrance of the Arsenale.
© Photo: Haupt & Binder, Universes in Universe

About the title and its context

The title is drawn from a series of works started in 2004 by the Paris-born and Palermo-based collective Claire Fontaine. The works consist of neon sculptures in different colours that render in a growing number of languages the words 'Foreigners Everywhere'. The phrase comes, in turn, from the name of a Turin collective who fought racism and xenophobia in Italy in the early 2000s: Stranieri Ovunque.

Adriano Pedrosa explains: "The backdrop for the work is a world rife with multiple crises concerning the movement and existence of people across countries, nations, territories and borders, which reflect the perils and pitfalls of language, translation and ethnicity, expressing differences and disparities conditioned by identity, nationality, race, gender, sexuality, wealth, and freedom. In this landscape, the phrase Foreigners Everywhere has (at least) a dual meaning. First of all, that wherever you go and wherever you are you will always encounter foreigners—they/we are everywhere. Secondly, that no matter where you find yourself, you are always, truly, and deep down inside, a foreigner."

"The Biennale Arte 2024's primary focus is thus artists who are themselves foreigners, immigrants, expatriates, diasporic, émigrés, exiled, or refugees — particularly those who have moved between the Global South and the Global North. Migration and decolonization are key themes here."

Adriano Pedrosa about the exhibition:

Contemporary Core

"The Italian straniero, the Portuguese estrangeiro, the French étranger, and the Spanish extranjero, are all etymologically connected to the strano, the estranho, the étrange, the extraño, respectively, which is precisely the stranger. Sigmund Freud's Das Unheimliche comes to mind — The Uncanny in English, which in Portuguese has indeed been translated as 'o estranho' — the strange that is also familiar, within, deep down side. According to the American Heritage and the Oxford Dictionaries, the first meaning of the word 'queer' is precisely 'strange', and thus the exhibition unfolds and focuses on the production of other related subjects: the queer artist, who has moved within different sexualities and genders, often being persecuted or outlawed; the outsider artist, who is located at the margins of the art world, much like the self-taught artist, the folk artist and the artista popular; the indigenous artist, frequently treated as a foreigner in his or her own land. The productions of these four subjects are the interest of this Biennale, constituting the Nucleo Contemporaneo."

"Indigenous artists have an emblematic presence and their work greets the public in the Central Pavilion, where the Mahku collective from Brazil will paint a monumental mural on the building's fagade, and in the Corderie, where the Maataho collective from Aotearoa/New Zealand will present a large-scale installation in the first room. Queer artists appear throughout the exhibition, and are also the subject of a large section in the Corderie, and one devoted to queer abstraction in the Central Pavilion."

"The Nucleo Contemporaneo will feature a special section in the Corderie devoted to the Disobedience Archive, a project by Marco Scotini, which since 2005 has been developing a video archive focusing on the relationships between artistic practices and activism. In the Exhibition, the presentation of the Disobedience Archive is designed by Juliana Ziebell, who also worked in the exhibition architecture of the entire International Exhibition. This section is divided into two main parts especially conceived for our framework: Diaspora activism and Gender Disobedience. The Disobedience Archive will include works by 39 artists and collectives made between 1975 and 2023."

more - curatorial text

 

Historic Core

"The International Exhibition will also feature a Nucleo Storico gathering works from 20th century Latin America, Africa, the Arab world, and Asia. Much has been written about global modernisms and modernisms in the Global South, and a number of rooms will feature works from these territories, much like an essay, a draft, a speculative curatorial exercise that seeks to question the boundaries and definitions of modernism. [...] We are all too familiar with the histories of modernism in Euroamerica, yet the modernisms in the Global South remain largely unknown. [...]. European modernism itself travelled far beyond Europe throughout the 20th century, often intertwined with colonialism, and many artists in the Global South traveled to Europe to be exposed to it [...]."

In the Central Pavilion three rooms are planned for the Nucleo Storico: one room is titled Portraits, one Abstractions and the third one is devoted to the the worldwide Italian artistic diaspora in the 20th century.

"The double-room named Portraits, includes works from 112 artists, mostly paintings but also works on paper and sculpture, spanning the years of 1905 and 1990. [...] The theme of the human figure has been explored in countless different ways by artists in the Global South, reflecting on the crisis of representation around the that very figure that marked much of the art in 20th century art. In the Global South, many artists were in touch with European modernism, through travels, studies or books, yet they bring in their own highly personal and powerful reflections and contributions to their works [...].

The room devoted to Abstractions includes 37 artists: most of them are being exhibited together for the first time, and we will learn from these unforeseen juxtapositions in the flesh, which will then hopefully point towards new connections, associations, and parallels much beyond the rather straightforward categories that I have proposed. [...]"

Artists from Singapore and Korea have been brought into this section, given that at the time they were part of the so-called Third World. In a similar manner, Selwyn Wilson and Sandy Adsett, from Aotearoa/New Zealand, have been brought into this Nucleo Storico as they are historical Maori artists.

"[...] A third room in the Nucleo Storico is dedicated to the worldwide Italian artistic diaspora in the 20th century: Italian artists who travelled and moved abroad developing their careers in Africa, Asia, Latin America, as well as in the rest of Europe and the United States, becoming embedded in local cultures — and who often played significant roles in the development of the narratives of modernism beyond Italy. This room will feature works by 40 artists who are first or second generations Italians, exhibited in Lina Bo Bardi's glass easel display system (Bo Bardi herself an Italian who moved to Brazil, and who won the 2021 Biennale Architettura's Special Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement in Memoriam)."

more - curatorial text

 

Further exhibition details

"Two quite different but related elements have emerged, rather organically in the research and have been developed, appearing as leitmotivs throughout the International Exhibition. The first one is textiles, which have been explored by many artists in the show in multiple, from key historical figures in the Nucleo Storico, to many artists in the Nucleo Contemporaneo. [...] These works reveal an interest in craft, tradition, and the handmade, and in techniques that were at times considered other or foreign, outsider or strange in the larger field of fine arts. [...] A second motif is artists — artists related by blood, many of them Indigenous. [...] Again tradition plays an important role here: the transmission of knowledge and practices from father or mother to son or daughter or among siblings and relatives."

As a guiding principle, the Biennale Arte 2024 has favored artists who have never participated in the International Exhibition — though a number of them may have been featured in a National Pavilion, a Collateral Event. Special attention is being given to outdoor projects, both in the Arsenale and in the Giardini, where a performance program is being planned with events during the pre-opening and closing weekend of the 60th Exhibition.

more - curatorial text

(From press information, La Biennale di Venezia)


Special Features by UiU:


A selection of national participations, collateral and parallel exhibitions.

Further activities, publications

Austrian armoury (Polveriera austriaca) 
Forte Marghera, Mestre
Ten works by Nedda Guidi (* 1927 Gubbio, + 2015 Rome), a sculptor fundamental to the evolution of contemporary ceramics

Applied Arts Pavilion
Arsenale, Sale d'Armi
Brazilian artist Beatriz Milhazes (* 1960), known for her work that overlays the Brazilian cultural imagination with references to western modernist painting, will present seven paintings and seven collages, all large-scale works. The project for the Pavilion, curated this year by Adriano Pedrosa, is a collaboration between La Biennale di Venezia and the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London.

The selected projects for the 2nd edition of Biennale College Arte 2023/24 are by Agnes Questionmark, Joyce Joumaa, Sandra Poulson, Nazira Karimi. The 4 artists will receive a grant of 25,000 euros for the realization of the final work. The artworks will be presented, out of competition, as part of the 60th International Art Exhibition. Over 150 young emerging artists under 30 from 37 countries around the world have joined the call for participation.

La Biennale dedicates the Biennale Sessions project to institutions that develop research and training programmes in architecture, the arts and related fields, and to Universities and Fine Arts Academies. The aim is to facilitate self-organised three-day visits for groups of at least 50 students and teachers, with the possibility of holding seminars in the exhibition venues offered free of charge and assistance in coordinating travel and accommodation.

A broad Educational Programme has been again scheduled for 2024, addressed to individuals and groups of students, children, adults, families, professionals, companies, and universities. All the initiatives aim at actively involving the participants, and are led by professional operators, carefully trained by La Biennale di Venezia. They are divided into two categories: Guided Tours and Workshop Activities.

The official catalogue, titled Stranieri Ovunque - Foreigners Everywhere, consists of two volumes:

Volume I is dedicated to the International Exhibition, curated by Adriano Pedrosa. The first pages of the book open with two short introductions by President Pietrangelo Buttafuoco and President Roberto Cicutto, followed by an interview with the Artistic Director of the Visual Arts Department Adriano Pedrosa by Julieta Gonzales. Part One of the book is dedicated to the critical essays and a number of "Conversations", including interviews with Anna Maria Maiolino and Nil Yalter. Part Two is dedicated to the presentation of the artists on exhibit and is divided into two main sections: Nucleo Storico and Nucleo Contemporaneo. Each artist is introduced by a critical essay that explores their work, and is illustrated with a rich iconographic apparatus.

Volume II is focused on the National Participations and the Collateral Events.

The Exhibition Guide is conceived to accompany the visitor through the Exhibition.

The Graphic Identity of Biennale Arte 2024 and the publication's design are by Estudio Campo (Paula Tinoco, Roderico Souza, Carolina Aboarrage) from São Paulo, Brazil.

Awards of the 60th International Art Exhibition

Golden Lion for the best National Participation:
Australia
Commissioner: Creative Australia
Curator: Ellie Buttrose
Exhibitor: Archie Moore
Venue: Giardini

Special mention for National Participations:
Republic of Kosovo
The Echoing Silences of Metal and Skin
Commissioner: Hana Halilaj, National Gallery of Kosovo
Curator: Erëmirë Krasniqi
Exhibitor: Doruntina Kastrati
Venue: Museo Storico Navale della Marina Militare, Riva S. Biasio 2148

Golden Lion for best participant in the International Exhibition Stranieri Ovunque – Foreigners Everywhere
Mataaho Collective
(2012 founded in Aotearoa, New Zealand; based there.)

Silver Lion for a promising young participant in the International Exhibition Stranieri Ovunque – Foreigners Everywhere
Karimah Ashadu
(* 1985 London, UK. Lives in Hamburg, Germany and Lagos, Nigeria.)

Special mentions:
Samia Halaby
(* 1936 Jerusalem, Palestine. Lives in New York City, USA.)
La Chola Poblete
(* 1989 Mendoza, Argentina. Lives Buenos Aires, Argentina.)

Awards – The Motivations

The awards of the International Jury have been presented with the following motivations:

Golden Lion for Best National Participation to Australia:
In this quietly powerful pavilion, Archie Moore worked for months to hand-draw with chalk a monumental First Nations family tree. Thus 65,000 years of history (both recorded and lost) are inscribed on the dark walls as well as on the ceiling, asking viewers to fill in blanks and take in the inherent fragility of this mournful archive. Floating in a moat of water are redacted official State records, reflecting Moore’s intense research as well as the high rates of incarceration of First Nations’ people. This installation stands out for its strong aesthetic, its lyricism, and its invocation of shared loss for occluded pasts. With his inventory of thousands of names, Moore also offers a glimmer of possibility for recuperation.

Special mention as National Participation to Republic of Kosovo:
Small yet potent, Doruntina Kastrati’s installation refers to feminized industrial labor and the wearing down of working women’s bodies. Referencing both the walnut shells used in factory-made Turkish delight as well as the medical parts used to replace worker’s knees as they make these sweets, Kastrati’s elegant sculptures invite viewers to interact with them. A vibrating soundscape travels up through the floor, resonating both in our bones and echoing a larger arena of feminist activism.

Golden Lion for the Best Artist in the International Exhibition Stranieri Ovunque – Foreigners Everywhere to Mataaho Collective:
The Maori Mataaho Collective has created a luminous woven structure of straps that poetically crisscross the gallery space. Referring to matrilinear traditions of textiles with its womb-like cradle, the installation is both a cosmology and a shelter. Its impressive scale is a feat of engineering that was only made possibly by the collective strength and creativity of the group. The dazzling pattern of shadows cast on the walls and floor harks back to ancestral techniques and gestures to future uses of such techniques.

Silver Lion for a Promising Young Artist in the International Exhibition Stranieri Ovunque – Foreigners Everywhere to Karimah Ashadu:
Karimah Ashadu with her video Machine Boys and related brass sculpture, Wreath, upends gendered assumptions about the gaze and what is considered proper to commemorate. With a searing intimacy, she captures the vulnerability of young men from the agrarian north of Nigeria who have migrated to Lagos and end up riding illegal motorbike taxis. Her feminist camera lens is extraordinarily sensitive and intimate, capturing the bikers’ subcultural experience as well as their economic precarity. Masterfully edited to draw out yet subtly critique the performance of masculinity on display, her sensual attention to surfaces of machine, flesh, and cloth reveals the rider’s marginal existence.

Two Special Mentions are awarded to the following artists:

Samia Halaby has been a longstanding artist, teacher, and activist who the jury wishes to honor with a special mention. Her commitment to the politics of abstraction has been married to her unwavering attention to the suffering of the people of Palestine. Her gorgeously rendered modernist painting in the “Nucleo Storico” of Foreigners Everywhere, entitled Black is Beautiful, suggests not only the sovereignty of the imagination but also the importance of global solidarities.

La Chola Poblete engages in critical play with histories of colonial representation from a trans Indigenous perspective. Her multivalent art - including watercolor, fabric, and photography - resists the exoticization of Indigenous women while she insists on the power of sexuality. She approaches Western religious iconography and indigenous spiritual practices with a trans and queer flair, inverting power relations with pieces that refer to ancestral knowledge from South America.

Golden Lions for Lifetime Achievement

The Italian-born Brazilian artist Anna Maria Maiolino (biography) and the Paris-based Turkish artist Nil Yalter (biography) are the recipients of the Golden Lions for Lifetime Achievement of the 60th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia - Stranieri Ovunque - Foreigners Everywhere

The Curator Adriano Pedrosa declared:
“This decision is particularly meaningful given the title and framework of my Exhibition, focused as it is on artists who have traveled and migrated between North and South, Europe and beyond, and vice versa. In this sense, my choice rests upon two extraordinary, pioneering women artists who are also migrants and who embody in many ways the spirit of Stranieri Ovunque—Foreigners Everywhere: Anna Maria Maiolino (Scalea, Italy, 1942, lives in São Paulo, Brazil), who migrated from Italy to South America, first to Venezuela and later to Brazil, where she lives today; Nil Yalter (Cairo, Egypt, 1938, lives in Paris, France), a Turkish who migrated from Cairo to Istanbul and finally to Paris, where she is based.”

The artists will be both participating at the Biennale Arte for the first time in 2024: Maiolino will present a new large-scale work that continues and unfolds her series of sculptures and installations in clay; Yalter will showcase a new reconfiguration of her innovative installation Exile is a hard job in conjunction with her iconic Topak Ev work, placed in the first room of the Central Pavilion at the Giardini.

(From press information)

Jury, 60th International Art Exhibition

Julia Bryan-Wilson, President of the Jury (USA)
Professor of Contemporary Art and LGBTQ+ Studies at Columbia University. Her curatorial credits include Cecilia Vicuña: About to Happen (with Andrea Andersson) and Louise Nevelson: Persistence. She is the author of Art Workers: Radical Practice in the Vietnam War Era; Fray: Art and Textile Politics (winner of the ASAP Book Prize, the Frank Jewett Mather Award, and the Robert Motherwell Book Award); and Louise Nevelson’s Sculpture: Drag, Color, Join, Face. Bryan-Wilson was a 2019 Guggenheim Fellow.

Alia Swastika (Indonesia)
Curator and researcher/writer that expands her practices in the last 10 years on the issue and perspectives of decoloniality and feminism, where she involved with different projects of decentralization of art, rewriting art history and encouraging local activism. She works as the Director of Biennale Jogja Foundation in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. She continues her researches on Indonesian female artists during Indonesia’s New Order and how the politics of gender from the regime influenced the practices of artists from that period. She is now part of curatorial team of Sharjah Biennale 16 in 2025.

Chika Okeke-Agulu (Nigeria)
Director of the Program in African Studies, Director of Africa World Initiative, and Robert Schirmer Professor of Art & Archaeology and African American Studies, Princeton University. Okeke-Agulu is Slade Professor of Fine Art, University of Oxford (2023), and a Fellow of The British Academy. He is editor of Nka: Journal of Contemporary African Art and author of El Anatsui. The Reinvention of Sculpture (2022). He is on the advisory board of the Hyundai Tate Research Centre, Tate Modern.

Elena Crippa (Italy)
Italian curator based in London. Since 2023, she has been Head of Exhibitions at London’s Whitechapel Gallery. She was previously Senior Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at Tate Britain, where her exhibitions explored transnational and transcultural intersections and engaged with art from a global perspective. Her shows at Tate included All Too Human (2018), Frank Bowling (2019) Paula Rego (2021) and the 2022 commission Hew Locke: The Procession.

María Inés Rodríguez (Colombia)
Colombian-French curator, currently Director of the Walter Leblanc Foundation in Brussels and Artistic Director of Tropical Papers. With a profound commitment to fostering a dialogue between artistic production and historical, political, and social contexts on both local and global levels, she has consistently championed the interconnectedness of art and its broader cultural implications. She was the Director of the CAPC Musée d'art Contemporain, Bordeaux, Curator at Large at MASP, São Paulo; Chief Curator at the MUAC in Mexico City, as well as at the MUSAC in Spain and guest curator at the Jeu de Paume in Paris.

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Practical information:

Opening hours:
Giardini and Arsenale
20 April – 30 September: 11 am - 7 pm
Until 30 Sept., only Arsenale: Fri & Sat. until 8 pm
1 October - 24 November: 10 am - 6 pm
Closed on Mondays (except 22/04, 17/06, 22/07, 02/09, 30/09, 18/11)

Buy tickets online


Organizer, contacts:

La Biennale di Venezia
Art and Architecture
Ca' Giustinian
San Marco 1364/A
30124 Venezia, Italy
Website | Email

Visual Art Press Office: 
artpress(at)labiennale.org
Tel.: +39 41 - 5218-849 / -846

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Official hashtags:
#BiennaleArte2024 #StranieriOvunque #ForeignersEverywhere


© Photo on top: © Haupt & Binder, universes.art


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