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Biennale Arte 2019: NZ's artist and curators announced

Biennale Arte 2019: New Zealand’s artist and curators announced

The Arts Council of New Zealand Toi Aotearoa is pleased to announce Dane Mitchell as New Zealand’s artist for the 58th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia in 2019.

The council is also pleased to announce Dr Zara Stanhope and Chris Sharp as the curators for New Zealand’s presentation.

Dane will create an ambitious new work that will speak to his interest in exploring how different forms of knowledge can intersect across the visible and the invisible.

The sculptural project will be simultaneously present whilst hiding in plain sight. Broadcasts that give voice to invisible realms and phenomena will be transmitted throughout the city of Venice, conveyed by modern and contemporary technologies.

“We are thrilled with Dane’s selection by unanimous decision,” says New Zealand at Venice Commissioner for 2019 Dame Jenny Gibbs.

“Known widely for his innovative and challenging work, Dane presented a strong proposal and we’re excited to have such an original project at this highly influential event.”

“Dane is at a timely point in his rich career, having presented in numerous international and New Zealand exhibitions for nearly two decades and forging strong international support and networks. We are confident this will stand him in good stead for his presentation at the Biennale Arte 2019.”

Eleven proposals were received for New Zealand’s presentation at the Biennale Arte 2019. They were assessed by a Selection Advisory Panel, chaired by Arts Council Chair Michael Moynahan.

Michael says, “Dane’s response to ‘space’ will push the boundaries of what’s expected of an exhibition at the Biennale Arte – continuing New Zealand’s legacy of being an innovative country with a great diversity of arts practice.”

Dane says he is delighted to join this legacy. “I’m thrilled to be selected for La Biennale di Venezia, 2019 and honoured to be part of such an incredible history of singularly strong New Zealand exhibitions in this prestigious context.”

The Biennale Arte opens every two years in May or June and runs for approximately six months. It involves more than 80 countries and attracts tens of thousands of key international curators, critics, collectors and artists to the three-day Vernissage (preview) period alone. It is the world’s largest and most prestigious international contemporary art exhibition, attended by key curators, writers and collectors.

The Selection Advisory Panel for the 2019 Venice Biennale comprised:
Dame Jenny Gibbs: NZ at Venice Commissioner 2019
Karl Johnstone: NZ at Venice Kaihautū 2019
Christina Barton: Director, Adam Art Gallery
Tobias Berger: Head of Art at Tai Kwun, Hong Kong (former Director Artspace New Zealand 2003-2005)
Nigel Borell: Curator Māori Art, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
Charlotte Davy: Head of Art, Te Papa Tongarewa
Simon Denny: Artist and creator of Secret Power for the New Zealand pavilion at the Biennale Arte 2015
Jenny Harper: Director, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu; Commissioner 2009, 2011, 2013
Leigh Melville: Chair, New Zealand at Venice Patrons
Dr Caroline Vercoe: Senior Lecturer, Art History, Auckland University

Creative New Zealand’s financial commitment will be $700,000 over two financial years.

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