DESASTRES | Marco Fusinato, 59th La Biennale di Venezia

Artist Marco Fusinato presents DESASTRES at the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, titled The Milk of Dreams, from 23 April to 27 November. This experimental noise project, commissioned by Australia Council for the Arts and curated by Alexie Glass-Kantor, synchronises sound with image and takes the form of a 200-day durational solo performance as installation for Australia’s 41st representation.

Marco Fusinato, DESASTRES, 2022, solo durational performance as installation, 200 days. Installation views, Australia Pavilion, 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, 2022. Photograph: Andrea Rossetti

DESASTRES is a product of frustrations, pessimism and turmoil experienced during Melbourne’s extended COVID-19 lockdown. Fusinato says of the work, “I’m interested in the tensions around opposing forces like noise versus silence, order versus disorder, the institution versus the underground, purity versus contamination . . . I feel like these tensions are always rubbing up against each other, and the interesting thing is how one deals with these agitations, with the contradictions. It’s that in-between state that I want to occupy.”

A page from the Score for DESASTRES, 2022, facsimile on Edition Peters manuscript paper, 45.5 × 30.3cm. Courtesy the artist and Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne

Penetrating the “in-between state” of order and disorder is an electric guitar used as a signal generator into mass amplification to improvise slabs of noise, saturated feedback and discordant intensities that trigger a flood of images; disaster, distress, death: animal carcasses, faeces, vomit, maggots and so on. These are part of Score, a catalogue of monochrome images from the archive for DESASTRES, printed full bleed onto manuscript paper, accompanying the exhibition and uploaded poco a poco on social media in the lead up to the Biennale, @desastres_desastres.

Despite the cacophony of noise and gloomy optics, Fusinato wants the audience to feel, to be reminded, that they are alive: “That they have a pulse.”

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