Curated by Lorenzo Balbi

Opening Friday, December 6th, 2019 at 6 pm
Until January 18th, 2020


Fondazione Berengo presents the last exhibition of 2019 for the RADICAL cycle, conceived by Penzo+Fiore as an investigative tool for the Contemporary, in which one thinks of glass, the main material of the historic furnace, not as an object but as a concept.

With Lorenzo Balbi’s proposal, one enters into the heart of a complex territory full of contradictions through artist Giovanna Repetto’s personal exhibition, Atmosfera, which will be inaugurated at Palazzo Franchetti on December 6th at 6 pm. It is an unexpectedly current exhibition, which presents an in depth look at those urgencies which plague the city of Venice.

The RADICAL cycle began last December with Daniele Capra, who presented a completely political project, including a piece based on a historic anti-fascist inscription found on the wall of the church of Santo Stefano, by Nemanja Cvijanović, flanked with blood decorations by Giovanni Morbin which soaked the walls of Palazzo-Franchetti. RADICAL then saw the presence of Matteo Bergamini with a presentation by Marcella Vanzo who created an irreverent and respectful “ballad” for heavy metal drums in memory of the dead from the Redipuglia memorial. The third event, curated by Pietro Gaglianò, consisted of two artists: Elena El Asmar and Loredana Longo. Together they presented a discussion about freedom and the ability to cross a Mediterranean landscape, cauterized by the burns of the present and dreamlike tapestries with an oriental flavor.

With Giovanna Repetto, suddenly, we find ourselves immersed in a site-specific exhibition that is not only skillfully placed in the space of the Foundation, but is also distributed in concentric circles in the wider lagoon landscape.
The research carried out by Giovanna Repetto (born in Padua, 1990. Lives and works in Turin) challenges itself against the difficulty of tracing a history of contemporary space in the future, understood as a (geo)physical environment but also as a continually changing social, political, and cultural context. Humans, interact and change their ecosystem at an unimaginable speed these days compared to the times of evolution that have determined the geological eras or the evolution of animal and plant species.

Her investigation aims to obtain a photograph (understood as a document) that may narrates these stratified realities, these atmospheres, using different media such as videos, installations or complex projects. Intending space as an anthropomorphic image of humankind, the artist recounts a landscape through the link it has with those who create and live in this space. The artist thus tries to make tangible a new imagery of a moving landscape that cannot be mapped, because it is ephemeral, and exists only for a short period of time.

The curator writes: “Anyone who has passed by the entrance to Palazzo Cavalli-Franchetti in Venice, a stone’s throw from the Accademia bridge, will remember the fresh flower shop nearby. One of the few in Venice, with small green windows made from a triangular space in the corner by the fifteenth-century palace gate. Unfortunately in these last few months, during the preparations of this exhibition, even the small florist of the Accademia has closed down, a victim of the unstoppable transformation of Venice into an entirely tourist-catered city in which any good or service – even buying a bouquet of flowers – is managed directly by a hotel or tour operator. In a way, that shop was a bastion of resistance, a symbol of resilience and radicalism. […]

In Venice’s shops, hotels, and restaurants there are flowers, bouquets, and floral arrangements that accentuate the various locations, and brighten the moods of those who see them. Just like the 20 million tourists who flock to the city every year, these cut flowers, kept alive through meticulous procedures and scientifically advanced techniques, come from all over the world, even from the most faraway and remote places. The journeys these flower-tourists must undertake to end their lives in the lagoon are long and complicated and the tricks used by the experts to get them to their destination still intact, fragrant and colourful, fascinating and unexpected. While this imported flora is treated as a true living treasure, Venice’s original plant life struggles to survive in an environment that has become increasingly inhospitable. It must cling to inaccessible places, to the few abandoned houses, to the crevices of suspension bridges.

The research of Giovanna Repetto stems from the analysis of these contradictions. Her works manifest themselves in artistic productions that reveal a curatorial approach. The artist, in fact, takes care of these floral species, inserting herself into the production process, in the journey and the packaging they must undergo. With a photographic approach, the various works she proposes for this exhibition-installation portray a human landscape, with its stories and its quirks, which fits into a unique historical, social and cultural context. The artist’s gaze, however, is not limited in this case to the creation of images, but stimulates an action that leads her to the literal care of the flowers which are the protagonists of her investigation. The tropical flowers, after being in refrigerators, soaked in ammonia, bandaged with gauzes, plastics and cushions, once they have arrived at their destination are taken into custody by the artist who subjects them to acupuncture sessions.”


We’d like to thank: Cristiano Girani, Francesco Biancat, Marika Voltolina, Sandro Girani, Claudia Rossetto (florists at Fioreria Popy), Elvio Minet (florist at the Rialto market), Andrea Bianca and Raffaella Borin (florists at the Campo S. Margherita market), Campagnol Roberto Trasporti, Merotto Fiori.


Giovanna Repetto
Curated by Lorenzo Balbi

Vernissage Friday, December 6th at 6 pm
Open until January 18th 2020
From Thursday to Saturday at 2 – 6 pm
Or by appointment

Free Entry

Fondazione Berengo
Palazzo Cavalli-Franchetti
San Marco 2847
30124 Venezia
+39 041739453
+39 3496674240

Fondazione Berengo

San Marco 2847
30124 Venezia - Italy

+39 041.739453


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