Venice Biennale 2015 Will Unite Pakistan and India


On and off again foes, India and Pakistan, present a joint exhibition for the first time at the Venice Biennale, according to a recent Art Newspaper report. The surprise announcement says that works by Mumbai artist Shilpa Gupta and Lahore-based artist Rashid Rana will both show works at the 18th-century Palazzo Benzon situated on the Grand Canal, in a co-exhibition titled “My East is your West.”

The history-making pairing follows years of poor representation at the Venice Biennale for both India and Pakistan. India’s first official representation at the international contemporary art extravaganza was not until 2011; but the country sidestepped the well-received 2013 installment.

Pakistan’s last participation in the Biennale was reportedly in 1956.

The announcement has generated a significant amount of enthusiasm and optimism aimed to transcend the art world. “I wish for the [Indian] subcontinent to be a space akin to the European Union, where individuals from neighboring countries can have the freedom of movement and ideas,” Rana told the press. “Initiatives such as this project may prove to be a journey towards the realization of this dream, which may not come true in my lifetime, but I hope that it does in my son’s.”

The Biennale will be held in Venice from May 9 to November 22, 2015.


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