Pirate attack on Venice Biennale

Among ConiglioViola’s operations the Pirate Attack to the Art Biennale in Venice is probably the most spectacular and emblematic too.

On June 7h, 2007 (day of the opening of the 52nd edition of the Biennale) an enormous Pirate Rabbit, almost 6 metres high, winged like the Lion of San Marco, with one eye covered with a classic pirate’s eye patch, crossed the whole Canale della Giudecca on board a large raft, as far as the Giardini (the official venue of the Biennale) and from there – at around 6pm – it fired 52 cannon shots at the buildings of the Biennale.
Then two rabbit-like pirates disembarked from the ship into terra firma to raise the Jolly Roger, with the logo of a large “Vitruvian Rabbit” over the gardens, the place traditionally used to host the flags of all the nations.

This action, that somebody read as neo-futurist, was intended by ConiglioViola as an act of conquest and reappropriation – although an ironical and provocative one – in relation to an Art System that is often revealed to be “blind” and with one eye “blindfolded”.
The fact that a Winged Rabbit – an animal symbolising “cowardice” – is leading the pirate attack is no coincidence, considering that the Winged Lion – which should in fact represent courage – seems to have ceased to inspire heroic choices and actions!

The series of eleven photographs of the Pirate Attack to Venice Biennale were exposed the first time in 2009 during ConiglioViola’s solo show Sono un pirata/Sono un signore at PAC Pavillion of Contemporary Art in Milan.

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