Jan Vormann: "Castles Made of Glass"
A series of four free workshops led by four artists devoted to public art and social practice, who employ an authentic, credible, and transparent approach to involve a young audience in a process of change and emancipation.
The Peggy Guggenheim Collection, with the participation of Swatch Art Peace Hotel, presents a series of four workshops for young adults by internationally renowned artists. Young artists challenge their own practice by creating workshops which become activators of community processes, and catalysts of actions to re-appropriate spaces and redefine social paradigms.
Serving the future instead of recording the past.
Peggy Guggenheim, Press release, Art of This Century, New York, 1942
The project is all the more significant under the present circumstances caused by the pandemic, which have led to a reformulation of priorities in communities on a global level. Workshops take into consideration current sanitary measures, such as social distancing, restrictions on gatherings and on accessing places, and online meeting opportunities. Therefore, workshops will take place both online and offline.
There are more solutions than problems in the world. Indeed, Jan Vormann believes that for every problem there exists at least one possible solution. So the question is always how to overcome difficult situations in the most pleasant, elegant, and effective way. Nowadays, we are well connected with the rest of the world through many different forms of media and therefore we are flooded with new problems arising seemingly by the minute. Traditional solutions have to be adapted constantly to ever-changing paradigms, new solutions have to be found at a steady pace to keep up with the contemporary challenges, and the public discourse needs to be reevaluated and renegotiated on almost a daily basis.
The workshop will review the means of communication in public spaces, specifically through glass as a material. We will explore all the properties of glass, its beauty, either shattered or unscathed, and its ability to allow for transparency or to obstruct the view. We will discuss problems that can be made out both locally and globally, and, if possible, tackle them by melting, blowing, glueing, and smashing glass.
Founding member of the T10 Studios in Berlin, Jan Vormann is an artist, researcher and lecturer. He studied Visual Arts at Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weißensee, Germany, as well as Monumental Arts at the Stieglitz Academy of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, Russia. He has lectured New Media / Interaction Design (IXD) at the New Media / IXD Department, BTK University, Berlin, has led numerous workshops and given talks at institutions such as the Parsons School of Design, Paris, the ARCAM Amsterdam Institute for Architecture, and the Kunsthochschule Burg Giebichenstein, Halle.
In addition to interventions in public spaces around the world, Vormann has presented his work at international exhibitions, including the Venice Biennale of Visual Arts (2011) and Architecture (2018), Ars Electronica in Linz (2010), the Nuits Blanches in Paris (2014), and the Humboldt Forum/ Altes Museum, Berlin (2009). His projects have been featured in global media outlets, such as Le Monde, The New York Times Mag, Deutsche Welle, and Financial Times Deutschland.
The workshop will be an opportunity for reflection on urban transformation and recovery through the study of Street Art techniques and the elaboration of one or more works of public art. Topics to be discussed will include the practice of Street Art, which forms it takes, how its language evolved from the 1950s to today, and painting techniques for walls, such as stencils and the use of spray cans. An introductory, theoretical part will be followed by a practical one to familiarize participants with the techniques and working tools. Meetings will result in the elaboration of the ideas for the final work (either imaginary or digital), an artistic expression which will have to speak to residents, tell a story with creative public function.
Street Art is by its very nature social. It is visible to everyone and can convey messages. When it evolves into works that give new life to derelict places, it becomes a gift for the city. The workshop will focus on how to operate in the public context, including the fine line separating what is a legal or illegal practice. It will also discuss the technical problems arising out of performing in an urban context. Ultimately, the creation of a collective, regenerative work should serve as a stimulus for both civic responsibility and creativity, so as to bring participants to look at the public space from a different point of view, to study its possibilities through a project to be realized.
Alice Pasquini, aka Alicè, is a street artist, illustrator and set designer. She studied Painting at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome, obtained an MA in Arts Criticism at the Universidad Complutense, Madrid, and attended a course in animation at the Ars Animation School, Madrid.
Pasquini is a multifaceted artist experimenting with various techniques and media. She is one of the few internationally renowned female street artists. Her works range from small interventions on urban furniture to large murals. She is interested in narrating, among other topics, female vitality, and in experimenting unusual materials. She received international public commissions from governmental agencies in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Copenhagen, London, Marrakech, Moscow, Naples, New York, Oslo, Rome and more. In 2015 she created the first 3D experiment of Street Art in Ostia, Rome. Since 2015 she has been involved in the urban regeneration project of Civitacampomarano, near Campobasso, and since 2016 she has been the Artistic Director of the CVTà Street Fest. In 2017 she participated in a Ted Talk.
She has exhibited at the Saatchi Gallery, London; US Embassy, Rome; MACRO – Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Roma; Mutuo Centro de Arte Barcelona, Espace Pierre Cardin, Paris. Her work has been featured in the international press.
The workshop will look at the technique of drawing and at the human body as one’s measuring instrument and limit. The social distancing of recent months has drawn attention to the external boundaries of our bodies. The very presence of a certain body/person can be life-threatening to some—and this is not a novelty—but the fact that a body, even your own, can present a threat for someone else is a new experience for most people. What happens when are forced to face the fact that we all live in bodies that are both mortal and potentially deadly? What can we gain from these experiences?
The workshop will focus on discussions and exercises and assignments to help participants process these current topics and be able to deliver their interpretations by creating large-scale drawings on paper. Techniques will include drawing, collage, and assemblage. One drawing per participant will be mounted and placed in Venice, either on walls or on the ground, like shadows, to interact with each other, with the city and its inhabitants.
Cecilia Jansson is known for her well-crafted sculptures and large-scale embroideries and drawings. The recipient of a Swedish Art Council working grant, she recently had a two-person show together with Geoffrey Chadsey at the Örebro Konsthall, Sweden, and group exhibitions at Sculpture Space and InCube Arts, New York; 3:e Våningen, Gothenburg; The Others Art Fair, Turin (2019). Recent residencies include Swatch Art Peace Hotel, Shanghai; The Pottery Workshop, Jingdezhen; NARS Foundation and the School of Visual Arts, New York; and Guttenberg Arts, New Jersey. She teaches sculpture at Örebro Art College, and has been a guest lecturer at the Yunnan Arts Institute, China, and a jury member at the OpenArt Biennial, Sweden. She participated in the Venice Bienniale of Visual Arts for the project Swatch Faces 2015.
The workshop will examine the relationship between the city of Venice and water, as a way to pay homage to both. Few cities in the world like Venice, perhaps no other, express such a close relationship with water. Venice is water and vice versa. They are inseparable and the connection involves inhabitants and visitors alike, who not only come into contact with the element of water, but often underestimate its importance and potential. As cities are considered living beings with a soul, undoubtedly the soul of Venice floats in its water.
The installation will consist of two “floating eyes” to be towed along the canals of Venice. The eye is one of the most powerful, complex, and mysterious symbols. Since the dawn of time, men recognized its power and ancient Mesopotamian civilizations regarded it as a divine symbol. Amedeo Modigliani often painted empty eyes with no pupils, and professed that “When I know your soul, I will paint your eyes.”
The workshop will involve participants in the development and creation of the installation. An introduction with images of floating sculptures and of eyes used as symbols in works of art will contextualize the planning of the work. Participants will then collaborate in the collection of found materials, in their transformation, and in the creation of the installation which will be floated along the canals of Venice.
Stefano Ogliari Badessi, aka S.O.B., is a nomadic installation artist who finds inspiration in nature and dreams. Beauty is the gateway to unexplored territories, the subconscious dreamlike part of us all, where we feel most free and alive and where self-discovery is possible. A large part of what makes his art unique is his ongoing study of materials. His installations are the sum of sensations experienced inside the created space: sensual, ethereal, incorporeal, universal and illuminating. Installations are imaged as a way to come into contact with some alternate spheres of reality, and then they are realized with unique sensory combinations and performative collaborations.
He has adapted his installations to be mobile and to respect the environment, and leave no trace nor damage once dismantled. A concern and respect for the environment inform his latest works, which are made of natural materials, such as pliable wood found in nature and then woven into shapes of animals which are either hunted and exploited or live in environments that are at risk.
He has exhibited his installations and sculptures across Europe, Asia, and North America, including international art fairs and biennials, such as the Biennale of Soncino, Cremona (2015); the Venice Biennale of Visual Arts (for the project Swatch Faces 2015); OpenArt Biennal, Sweden (2017); Scope Art Fair, Miami (2019).
With the participation of
The Overcoming project is part of the collaboration with ASviS, and of the Sustainable Development Festival 2020