compresso dell'ospedaletto, veneza, itália
20.4 - 27.11.2022

Penumbra is a group exhibition curated by Alessandro Rabottini and Leonardo Bigazzi that feature eight new video and filmic installations commissioned to Karimah Ashadu (1985, UK), Jonathas de Andrade (1982, Brazil), Aziz Hazara (1992, Afghanistan), He Xiangyu (1986, China), Masbedo (Nicolò Massazza, 1973 and Iacopo Bedogni, 1970, Italy), James Richards (1983, UK), Emilija Škarnulytė (1987, Lithuania), and Ana Vaz (1986, Brazil), and produced by Fondazione In Between Art Film.


Taking inspiration from the rarefied atmosphere of Venice and from the hybrid architecture of the Ospedaletto and the church of Santa Maria dei Derelitti, Penumbra is conceived as a stage where images, sounds, and the set design are in reciprocal dialogue with the architecture and its history, and explores moving images as a site of material and metaphorical transformation.


The concept of “penumbra” is addressed on two levels: in material terms, the absence of light is the necessary condition for making moving images visible; in metaphorical terms, semi-darkness is interpreted as a threshold or place of transition within which the contours and appearance of things blur together. Understood as the space we inhabit as much at nightfall as at dawn, semi-darkness redefines the distinction between true and false, historical memory and personal specters, the reality of bodies and their social representations, the human subject and the subjugated environment. Through a diversity of languages ranging from narrative approaches to visual and sound experimentations, moving images stand here as a multi-faceted medium to speak of a world that is global, fragmented and in continuous metamorphosis.


Jonathas De Andrade’s Out Loud ( 2022) engages with a group of homeless people gathered together for a Sunday lunch while questioning art as a political tool of speculative fiction.


Penumbra is accompanied by Vanishing Points, a cross-disciplinary public programme curated by Bianca Stoppani and Paola Ugolini that will involve the artists featured in the exhibition and expand the conversations around their practice, via panels with international curators and thinkers.

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