Biennale Art 2022 | 2019 | 2017
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Belkis Ayon “Nlloro” “Sikan con chivo” “Nuestro Deber” “The Rope and the Fire” “La Pesca” “La Soga Y el Fuego” ”Perfidia” “Resurreccion” “Sikan” “Nasako y Espiritu Santo” “Yo te di el poder” Venice Biennale Art Exhibition


Belkis Ayon was born in 1967 and died in 1999 in Cuba. Her works are presented at the Arsenal in Venice.

When Belkis Ayon was invited to exhibit her works at the 1993 Venice Biennale, her country suffered a severe economic crisis and limited finances, so much so that she had transported them on her bicycle to Havana airport, followed by her father, who unfortunately arrived too late with the rest of the cargo.

Luckily, an Italian traveller leaving for Milan took care of getting them to Venice a few days later.

The paintings of this artist always present the same type of stylized characters, silhouettes whose eyes can only be seen.

They can only be distinguished by their different attitudes and the magnificent patterns drawn on their suits that hug their white, grey, or black bodies.

This subtle progression from pure white to deep black through a rich palette of greys results from a particular method of engraving and glueing materials with heterogeneous textures: collagraphy.

“Nloro, 1991”

Nlloro is a magnificent painting depicting a funeral ritual conducted by a priest-sorcerer covered with cabalistic signs whose arms are represented in three colours and three different positions to show the gestures of elevation that accompany his words.

The figures surrounding the dead are iconographic symbols associated with mourning: two of them are leaning forward with their arms around their bodies, some wailing or comforting themselves, while others bear religious symbols: the totem pole, the cross and the lit candle.

A ritual resulting from a complicated mixture of Christian faith and ancient myths.

Belkis Ayon had taken a close interest in the rules, symbols and stories of the Abakuà, an Afro-Cuban fraternal society whose founding myth is based on a betrayal committed by a woman.

“Sikan con chivo, 1993”

Sikan, the princess of the Abakuà, is seen from the back, her head and bust covered with white scales showing a medallion of Christ carrying the lamb in her arms; Sikan carries a goat destined for sacrifice and turns her head intently, looking at the viewer, saying, “help me bear my cross with patience.”

This painting was exhibited at the 1993 Biennale and was given by the artist to Stellana Favaro, a Venetian ceramist, to thank her for hosting her during her stay in Venice.

The other paintings in this exhibition present the same simple and elegant aesthetic research and the same country-specific mysticism of this artist, who, however, called herself an atheist.

In his 1993 text, Belkis Ayon wrote: “First of all, I am interested in, and I question human nature - this spirituality, this ephemeral feeling, thanks to which my work can be appreciated by a universal audience.”

Belkis Ayon, Nuestro Deber (Our Duty), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Nuestro Deber
Belkis Ayon, Nuestro Deber (Our Duty), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Nuestro Deber
Belkis Ayon, The Rope and the Fire, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, The Rope and the Fire
Belkis Ayon, The Rope and the Fire, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, The Rope and the Fire
Belkis Ayon, La Pesca, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, La Pesca
Belkis Ayon, La Pesca, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, La Pesca
Belkis Ayon, La Pesca, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, La Pesca
Belkis Ayon, Nlloro, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, Nlloro
Belkis Ayon, Nlloro, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, Nlloro
Belkis Ayon, Nlloro, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, Nlloro
Belkis Ayon, La Soga Y el Fuego, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, La Soga Y el Fuego
Belkis Ayon, La Soga Y el Fuego, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, La Soga Y el Fuego
Belkis Ayon, Perfidia (Perfidie), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, Perfidia
Belkis Ayon, Perfidia (Perfidie), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, Perfidia
Belkis Ayon, Resurreccion, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Résurrection
Belkis Ayon, Resurreccion, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Résurrection
Belkis Ayon, Resurreccion, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Résurrection
Belkis Ayon, Sikan con chivo (Sikan with a goat), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Sikan con chivo
Belkis Ayon, Sikan con chivo (Sikan with a goat), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, Sikan con chivo
Belkis Ayon, Sikan, Nasako y Espiritu Santo (Sikan, Nasako and Holy Spirit), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, l'Esprit Saint
Belkis Ayon, Sikan, Nasako y Espiritu Santo (Sikan, Nasako and Holy Spirit), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, l'Esprit Saint
Belkis Ayon, Sikan, Nasako y Espiritu Santo (Sikan, Nasako and Holy Spirit), Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Ayon, l'Esprit Saint
Belkis Ayon, Yo te di el poder, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, el poder
Belkis Ayon, Yo te di el poder, Venice Biennale Art Exhibition
Belkis Ayon, el poder

Artists Accardi | Adams | Altin | Andrade | Asawa | Ayon | Azoulay | Baeza | Bonnet | Cameron | Chaile | Cherri | Correa | Davis | Echakhch | Esbell | Euler | Fadojutimi | Fantin | Feodoroff | Fritsch | Ghebreyesus | Goldshmied Chiari | Goldwasser | Hill | Horra | Hovsepian | Humeau | Humphries | Hwami | Ikeda | Isolotto | Jurgensen | Katz A. | Katz B. | Keresztes | Kim | Knebl Scheirl | Kogelnik | Kudo | Leigh | Lewis | Ukraine | Mirga-Tas | Montes | Mukherjee | Ovartaci | Pachpute | Paulino | Pessoa | Pilotto | Qadiri | Rego | Saint-Phalle | Sara | Sedira | Sillman | Sime | Solar | Sunna | Talbot | Techno | Ursuta | Vicuna | Von Heyl | Wiggen | Zvavahera
2022 Artists | Countries | Map Address | Hours Tickets
Biennale Art 2022 | 2019 | 2017



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