About this panel discussion

We will gather in person in the James Gallery and also on Zoom. Register here.

Zoom link for livestream: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84007054152

This is event is part of the discussion series Yiddishland Pavilion at The James Gallery: Transnationality, Memory and Museology

The discussions will investigate (trans)national representation at the Venice biennale, integration of contemporary art into Jewish museums, and artistic female voices that find alternative ways to be heard.

At the 59th Venice Biennale Yiddishland Pavilion lands on various pavilions of countries with history of Jewish presence and migration to challenge the principle of national division embedded at the core of the biennale. This principle, inherited by the Venice Biennale from the world fairs of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and introduced into the art realm, «represented a certain order of things and, in it, an order of the world». It also «obeyed the discourse of nationalism and imperialism» and reproduced global power relations and structures. Throughout the history of the biennale there were numerous attempts to shift this order and rethink the concept of national representation and reflect upon global processes - for instance, this year, Russian Pavilion was closed because the artists and the curator withdrew from participation due the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Estonian Pavilion was located in the building of the Pavilion of the Netherlands and the Pavilion of Nordic countries was transformed into Sámi Pavilion in order to provide a platform for indigenous artists and narratives. However, matters of citizenship, national belonging and dominance still largely prevail when an artist/artists are being chosen to represent their country at the biennale.

For the first discussion on October 12, curator and cultural theorist Suzana Milevska will discuss the example of the 2011 initiative of the project Call the Witness that was the 2nd Roma Pavilion. Curator Galit Eilat will speak about the official Polish participation in the Polish national pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale, the video installation '… and Europe will be stunned ' by the Israeli-born artist Yael Bartana. Artist Sislej Xhafa will speak about his peregrinations around the grounds of the 48th Biennale with a soccer ball and Albanian flag, which served as a precursor to these alter-international pavilion interventions.

More information on the Yiddishland Pavilion project can be found here.

Yiddishland Pavilion at the James Gallery is organized by Yevgeniy Fiks and Maria Veits in collaboration with the James Gallery.