ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011
 
ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011
jun 16, 2011

ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011

‘the cloud of unknowing’ by ho tzu nyen at venice art biennale 2011 image © designboom

‘the cloud of unknowing’ by artist ho tzu nyen is a new work commissioned for singapore’s national participation at the venice art biennale 2011. named after a fourteenth-century primer on monasticism, this video installation creates a sensory experience of uncertainty and doubt in search for the divine. with the paintings of tintoretto selected as a cornerstone for the biennale, ho takes on the challenge of representing the sacred and transcendental, a familiar subject in the work of italian renaissance painters.

the centerpiece of the installation, ho’s film portrays narratives of eight different tenants in a deserted, low-income public housing block in singapore. portraying the divine through the form of ethereal clouds, each character encounters a cloud that alternates between the form of a figure and a vaporous mist. dimly lit by a single-channel HD projection of ho’s video, the pavilion is transformed into an immersive environment with the addition of smoke machines. the film, lighting, and smoke combine to render a state analogous to a spiritual journey for the audience.

ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011 the pavilion’s architecture adds meaning to this site-specific work image © designboom

ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011 a lighting and smoke machine system is behind the screen image © designboom

ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011 image © designboom

ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011 stills from the projected film images © ho tzu nyen

ho tzu nyen: singapore pavilion at venice art biennale 2011 image © designboom

commissioned by the national arts council, this exhibition was curated by june yap and is located within the hall of the saints filippo and giacomo of the museum diocesano di venezia. the 54th international art exhibition in venice, italy, runs until november 27, 2011.

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