fbpx Biennale Arte 2022 | Ilse Garnier
La Biennale di Venezia

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Ilse Garnier

1927, Germany – 2020, France

  • TUE - SUN
    23/04 > 25/09
    11 AM - 7 PM

    27/09 > 27/11
    10 AM - 6 PM
  • Central Pavilion
  • Admission with ticket

The first version of Blason du corps féminin, from 1979, is a concrete poem by French artist Ilse Garnier realized on forty-six sheets of paper. In the introduction, her husband and fellow artist Pierre Garnier explains that his wife’s writing is a compelling approach to depicting the poetic power of the female body that has been sapped by the patriarchal vision of history. In each page that follows, Ilse Garnier focuses on the body of a different woman, choosing adjectives, lines, or geometric shapes to illustrate its qualities. She treats the letter o in the French word corps (body) as a symbol of the female figure: it multiplies when the body in question is free, expands when it is luminous as the sun, vanishes when it is absent. The graphic energy used to describe these women stands in clear contrast to the heraldic and poetic tradition alluded to by the title, conveying an idea of the feminine that cannot be reduced to a static image. Not coincidentally, when Garnier participated in the 1978 exhibition Materializzazione del linguaggio, curator Mirella Bentivoglio described her compositions as metaphors that wedded the expressiveness of words to the magnetism of images. Her works show how poetry is heightened by the freedom with which signs are used to construct text.

Stefano Mudu

Central Pavilion
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Biennale Arte
Biennale Arte