• Christian Jankowski curator Manifesta 11 - Foto Livio Baumgartner
  • Videostills: John Arnold, Artist Manifesta 11, and Fabian Spiquel / and Mandisha Roncoroni, moderator © Manifesta 11
  • Hedwig Fijen, founder and director Manifesta Manifesta 11 - Foto Livio Baumgartner
  • Cabaret Voltaire Foto: Martin Stollenwerk
  • Cabaret Voltaire Foto: Martin Stollenwerk
  • Helmhaus Foto: FBM Studio, Zürich
English text below

L’estate 2016 vedrà, a Zurigo, l’opening dell’undicesima edizione di Manifesta, Biennale Europea di Arte Contemporanea. Dopo l’edizione di San Pietroburgo, datata 2014, quest’anno ci sarà un’importante novità: per la prima volta nella vita di Manifesta il curatore della biennale sarà un video maker ed artista concettuale (non quindi un curatore o un gruppo di curatori), il tedesco Christian Jankowski. Il suo progetto prenderà il nome di What People Do For Money: Some Joint Ventures e si basa su tre principii fondamentali: collaborazione, interesse verso gli spettatori estranei ai circoli dell’arte e riflessione sui format dei mass-media.

Punto cardine del suo progetto è l’incontro degli artisti invitati con i rappresentanti delle diverse professioni praticate a Zurigo, in modo da creare un legame simbiotico tra opere d’arte e contesto lavorativo della città ospitante. Non è da sottovalutare che gli artisti invitati saranno ospitati da ufficiali di polizia, meteorologi e dentisti (nonché, quindi, lavoratori-tipo della città). Da questo connubio nasceranno circa 35 nuovi lavori, che, dal 26 giugno, verranno esposti per 100 giorni in diversi luoghi della città. Contemporaneamente, anche l’area del Löwenbräukunst (che comprende Migros Museum für Ge-genwartskunstLUMA Westbau / POOL etc. e Kunsthalle Zürich), il cabaret Voltaire e l’Helmhaus saranno centri espositivi di primo piano per l’esposizione europea.

Il nucleo della biennale sarà, però, il Pavilion of Reflections, una struttura multifunzionale, galleggiante sul lago della città, costruita da ETH Zurich, sotto la direzione del professore Tom Emerson e dei suoi studenti, appositamente per Manifesta11, vicino a piazza Bellevue: qui, di giorno, i visitatori potranno usufruire della piscina comunale costruitavi all’interno e del bar quale luogo di incontro, mentre, di sera, osservare video e film in cui si documenta la realizzazione delle opere da parte dei diversi artisti.Come sottolinea la documentazione messa in circolazione, Manifesta11 vuole proporsi come momento di riflessione sulle condizioni sociali, politiche e geografiche dell’Europa odierna, zoppicante con il masso della crisi alle calcagna: basti soffermarsi sui dibattiti intorno all’economia e alle migrazioni in corso. E, come dalla prima edizione del ’93, ancora quest’anno il fulcro della riflessione sarà condotto a partire dal pensiero critico, dalla ricerca scientifica e dalla sperimentazione artistica, nonché dalla posizione di primato in cui vengono poste le giovani generazioni interessate all’arte, con un occhio di riguardo per Zurigo.

Löwenbräukunst - Entrance to Arts Center on Limmatstrasse, additional storey Kunsthalle Zürich Foto: Thies Wachter

Löwenbräukunst – Entrance to Arts Center on Limmatstrasse, additional storey Kunsthalle Zürich Foto: Thies Wachter

Ready for Manifesta 11? Here the latest news!
In the summer of 2016, the City of Zurich will host the eleventh edition of the Manifesta Biennial. It is the first time in the history of Manifesta that an artist, Christian Jankowski, has been named as curator. Under the title What People Do For Money: Some Joint Venture“ artists will be brought together with a ran- ge of representatives from various Zurich-based professions. The result will be about 35 new productions, which will be shown from June 2016 over 100 days at various locations, some of them very unusual, and at the respective work- places. At the same time, the Löwenbräukunst-Areal (Migros Museum für Ge- genwartskunst, LUMA Westbau / POOL etc. and Kunsthalle Zürich), the Cabaret Voltaire and the Helmhaus will function as central exhibition venues. The core of the exhibition is the “Pavilion of Reflections”, a floating platform on Lake Zurich, which was erected for Manifesta 11 near Bellevue. This is where people can experience close up the crucial moments in the creation of the artworks, as recorded on film.Manifesta, the European Biennial of Contemporary Art, was founded in 1993 by Hedwig Fijen from the Netherlands and holds its exhibitions at different locations every time. Each edition responds to the diversity of social, political and geographi- cal conditions in today’s Europe. A Europe that finds itself in crisis, more so than
ever before, as demonstrated by the current debates surrounding the economy and migration. Ever since the first edition of Manifesta 20 years ago, the initiators have always placed the emphasis on critical thought, scientific research and artistic expe- rimentation. Its high standards of mediation and comprehensive support programme also ensure a dialogue with young people interested in art. The “Parallel Events” held in conjunction with each edition invited established artistic and cultural platforms from the city and surrounding region to take part in a joint framework programme.The scene of Manifesta 11 is the City of Zurich, the heart of a dynamic and ever- changing urbanity. The Manifesta in Zurich 2016 complements the festivities marking the centenary of Dada with a contemporary, international and visionary dimension. Manifesta aims to explore how new audience groups can be sensitised and won over for contemporary art and culture in Zurich today. Once a basically agricultural country, Switzerland and with it, Zurich, have developed into an international centre of finance and service. Hardly any other city has been influenced as much by trade and busi- ness activities as Zurich, which is historically characterised by Protestantism. To what extent do professions leave their mark on one’s own identity? What standing does one’s own profession have in today’s society and culture?
About the biennial

Manifesta, the roving European Biennial of Contemporary art, changes it location every two years – Rotterdam (1996),Luxembourg (1998),  Ljubljana(2000), Frankfurt (2002), San Sebastian (2004), Nicosia (2006 – cancelled), Trentino-South Tyrol (2008), Murcia in dialogue with  northern Africa (2010) andLimburg (2012). Manifesta purposely strives to keep its distance from what are often seen as the dominant centres of artistic  production, instead seeking fresh and fertile terrain for the mapping of a new cultural topography. This includes innovations in curatorial  practices, exhibition models and education. Each Manifesta biennial aims to investigate and reflect on emerging developments in  contemporary art, set within a European context. In doing so, we present local, national and international audiences with new aspects and  forms of artistic expression.Each Manifesta comprises a range of activities extending over a period of two or more years. This incorporates publications, meetings,  discussions and seminars (the so-called ‘Coffee Breaks’), staged in diverse locations throughout Europe and in the neighbouring regions, culminating in the final three-month long exhibition (or in 2006, an ‘art school’) in the host city or region. In this way, Manifesta aims to create a  keen and workable interface between prevailing international artistic and intellectual debates, paying attention to the specific qualities and  idiosyncrasies of a given location.Inherent to Manifesta’s nomadic character is the desire to explore the psychological and geographical territory of Europe, referring both to  border-lines and concepts. This process aims to establish closer dialogue between particular cultural and artistic situations and the broader,  international fields of contemporary art, theory and politics in a changing society. Manifesta has a pan-European vocation and at each edition,  it has successfully presented artists, curators, young professionals and trainees from as many as 40 different countries. With the expansion of  the European community from 12 to 28 countries, and with the possible target of around 30 nations in the foreseeable future, Manifesta also  realizes the importance of creating links with Europe’s neighbours in Asia, the eastern Mediterranean and northern Africa. At the same time, it  continues to focus on minority groups and cultures within Europe itself. Therefore Manifesta looks forward to expanding its network and  building creative partnerships with organizations, curators, art professionals and independent figureheads in Europe and beyond, drafting an  interlocking map of contemporary art.

Concept Visualization “Pavillon of Reflections“ Copyright: ETH Studio Emerson

Concept Visualization “Pavillon of Reflections“ Copyright: ETH Studio Emerson

Videostills: John Arnold, Artist Manifesta 11, and Fabian Spiquel / and Mandisha Roncoroni, moderator  © Manifesta 11

Videostills: John Arnold, Artist Manifesta 11, and Fabian Spiquel / and Mandisha Roncoroni, moderator © Manifesta 11