Dallas Pavilion 2019 (May 8, 9, & 10) Venice Biennale

Dallas Pavilion 2019 presents the work of artists, art historians, and community activists in the form of seventeen 17 x 22-inch printed broadsides.

Organized by Michael Corris (artist and writer) and Jaspar Joseph-Lester (artist and writer), Dallas Pavilion 2019 will be distributed free of charge during the artist and press preview days, May 8 – 10th.

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In 2012, Michael Corris and Jasper Joseph-Lester commissioned individuals living in Dallas to submit a short text describing a specific space of cultural production within the environs of the DFW Metroplex.

The result was the 2013 Dallas Pavilion, an eighty-eight-page handbook published by Free Museum of Dallas Press and distributed free of charge during the artist and press preview week of the 2013 Venice Biennale.

Dallas Pavilion was intended to function as a virtual pavilion showcasing the cultural aspirations of Dallas and Fort Worth. In the publication, civic institutions of culture, DIY exhibition spaces, and other expressions of cultural vitality within the DFW Metroplex were given equal weight.

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Given the current state of affairs of the cultural infrastructure of Dallas — a condition that some would describe as underdeveloped, stagnant, and possibly shrinking — it seems appropriate to reconsider the tactic of celebrating and promoting the cultural landscape of Dallas and the aspirations of its civic leaders.

In contrast to such a characterization of the prophetic nature of urban development in Dallas, we feel the necessity to present a more sober assessment of the cultural landscape of the city. In so doing, we are less interested to celebrate the growth of the arts on an institutional level and more concerned to address issues that are representative of the everyday life of the citizens of Dallas. The question of equity across all dimensions of urban life — cultural, economic, educational, and health care — are first and foremost on our agenda.

We are well aware of the shining Dallas Arts District and the other cultural jewels dotted across the city. While we recognize these institutions for what they are, we are cognizant of what they may yet bring to the quality of life of the inhabitants of Dallas. Still, we are compelled to ask “What use is culture to a city that remains marked by historical segregation, huge economic disparities, a burgeoning population of homeless persons, and a net loss of young artists?” This complex question, when placed against the responses by the leaders of Dallas, compels us to turn our attention away from Dallas and towards the achievements of other cities, groups, and individuals.

We do not wish to privilege the arts or artists or to hold them hostage to the global urban aspirations or policies of a particular city government. Instead, we will present concepts and practices relevant to the development of the city, but which have thus far either eluded the master planners of Dallas or have been deformed fatally by ignorance, greed, and racial bias. As nearly as possible the city of Dallas — its high-profile cultural riches and its widely publicized hopes for the future — will remain invisible within our pavilion. What is visible in Dallas Pavilion 2019 is a selection of concepts and images that reflect on models of humane urban development. While some of these ideas and projects are hardly new their importance to the civic leaders of Dallas has yet to be confirmed.

Participants: Amanda Beech, Xxavier Carter, Melanie Clemmons, Roberto Conduro, Maureen Connor, Colette Copeland, Michael Corris, Diane Durant, Ludwig Engel, Tamara Johnson & Trey Burns III, Ashley Jones, Alfredo Jaar, Jaspar Joseph-Lester, Adam Kaasa, Kelly Kroener and Eli Walker, Stéphane Mroczkowsky & Alexandra Pignol, The People’s Cultural Plan (New York, NY), Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos, Laray Polk, Peter Scott, Giovanni Valderas, and K. Yoland.

Xavier Carter

Maureen Connor

Alfredo Jaar

K. Yoland

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