New Zealand pavilion at the 2019 Venice Biennale

March 29, 2019

Dane Mitchell,  Post hoc  2019. Digital working drawing © The artist.

Dane Mitchell, Post hoc 2019. Digital working drawing © The artist.

Congratulations to Dane Mitchell on his fourthcoming participation in the 2019 Venice Biennale representing New Zealand. Dane Mitchell’s Post hoc will symbolically revive vanished, extinct and defunct phenomena. Throughout the duration of the Biennale Arte 2019 an extensive inventory of over 300 different lists comprising millions of lost entities, will be enunciated within an anechoic chamber inside the New Zealand Pavilion, situated in the Palazzina Canonica, the former headquarters of exhibition partner Istituto di Scienze Marine, on the Riva dei Sette Martiri. 

The melancholy archive of defunct phenomena—from forgotten words, to ghost towns and former nations—will broadcast continuously via several cell-phone stealth towers designed to resemble trees in sites across Venice. These towers will facilitate a unique and expansive exhibition footprint that will reach Venetians and visitors beyond the Exhibition’s borders. 

Listeners at the towers will tune in to over 10,000 entities named each day, encompassing an encyclopedic range of subjects, from lists of known black holes, disappeared sounds and extinct birds to former national anthems. Coinciding with the audible component, lines of text will be printed on rolls of paper in sync with the transmissions in the Palazzina’s empty library. While highlighting a vast inventory of bygone things, Mitchell’s exhibition eludes causality between the context of extinction and “past things,” leaving the viewer to consider the implications of this loss. Post hoc presents a timely intersection with global concerns, such as climate change, depletion of resources and technological obsolescence.

Eleven proposals were received for New Zealand’s presentation at the Biennale Arte 2019. They were assessed by a Selection Advisory Panel, chaired by Arts Council Chair Michael Moynahan. Michael says, “Dane’s response to ‘space’ will push the boundaries of what’s expected of an exhibition at the Biennale Arte – continuing New Zealand’s legacy of being an innovative country with a great diversity of arts practice.”

The project is being curated by Dr. Zara Stanhope and Chris Sharp.

Dane Mitchell
Post hoc
May 11–November 24, 2019 

New Zealand Pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale
Palazzina Canonica 
Riva dei Sette Martiri
Castello 1364/A 
30124 Venezia
Italy