The PERPETUAL ROMANI-GYPSY PAVILION
was officially launched at the VENICE BIENNALE 2009
on Sunday 7 June 2009, 12 am.
Hungarian Pavilion, Giardini, Venice.
The launch of the Perpetual Gypsy Pavilion is a response to a twofold crisis. While 2007 saw the acclaimed first Roma Pavilion in Venice (www.romapavilion.org), the planned Roma Pavilion in 2009 was canceled at very short notice. This highly unfortunate situation is made all the more acute by the fact that in 2009, the Venice Biennale is taking place amid extreme violations of the human rights of Romani People (Gypsies) in Italy and in other European countries.
The Perpetual Gypsy Pavilion is an immediate, yet long-term response to this situation. It is a mobile, that is, a traveling pavilion, inaugurated at the Venice Biennale 2009. The first Residence of the post-launch Gypsy Pavilion – with its own spaces, buildings, artists, curators and concepts – is already planned for HELSINKI Suomenlinna-Sveaborg (The Nordic Institute for Contemporary Art – NIFCA’s former base). It will take place in the context of a new artistic format: an Arts Assembly (read more here). The second Residence will take place in BELGRADE. More Gypsy Pavilions are to follow in the lead-up to the Venice Biennale 2011.
The artists of the Perpetual Gypsy Pavilion will include the leading representatives of Roma, Romanichal, Sinti, Kale, Traveller, Manush, Romanisael (some of the related Gypsy-Romani cultures and subgroups) and other Gypsy artists.
Several renowned artists, thinkers, curators, public figures and national pavilions have already declared their solidarity and offered their support to the Pavilion.
The name of the pavilion carries within it the hope and demand that no matter what the organisational, financial, artistic or political situation, a Gypsy-Romani pavilion or representation will have an official presence at Venice Biennale and within the established art context. Further – it leads to the demand that Romani artists to be represented in the National Pavilions of their countries of residence.
For the first time in 2009, the absence of Gypsy artists in national pavilions is being addressed in the mediated form of the Postcard from Venice.
The Postcard from Venice is being distributed in the context of several National Pavilions – including, so far:
The Pavilion of Greece
The Pavilion of Hungary
The Pavilion of Italy (Arsenale) (needs re-confirmation from non-curatorial officials)
The Pavilion of Poland
The Pavilion of Estonia
The PavIlion of Serbia
The Pavilion of Turkey
The Pavilion of Uruguay
More national pavilions are, we hope, to follow.
Since the launch, new pavilions that have joined are:
The Nordic & Danish Pavilion
The Pavilion of the Comoros Islands
The launch of the Perpetual Gypsy Pavilion will take place at the Hungarian Pavilion in the Venice Giardini at 12 am on Sunday, 7th of June, 2009. This Perpetual Gypsy Pavilion launch is not part of – but is officially supported by the Hungarian Pavilion.