Anna Jermolaewa / Pavilion of Austria at Venice Art Biennale 2024

Official description: For its pavilion at Biennale Arte 2024, Austria presents conceptual artist Anna Jermolaewa. In her work, the artist — born in Leningrad (USSR) and living in Vienna since 1989 — proves to be an astute observer of human coexistence, its social conditions and political requisites. For the Austrian contribution, Jermolaewa draws an arc from her personal experience of migration as a political refugee to signifiers of nonviolent resistance against authoritarian regimes. In Rehearsal for Swan Lake, made in collaboration with Ukrainian choreographer Oksana Serheieva, Jermolaewa references a memory from her teenage years. In times of political unrest, for instance the death of a head of state, Soviet television replaced their regularly scheduled broadcast with Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake in a loop for days. In Soviet cultural memory, the famous ballet became code for a change in power. Jermolaewa and Serheieva turn the ballet from a tool of censorship and distraction into a form of political protest — here, the dancers rehearse for regime change in Russia.

Anna Jermolaewa / Pavilion of Austria at Venice Art Biennale 2024. Venice (Italy), April 19, 2024.

— Right-click (Mac: ctrl-click) this link to download Quicktime video file.

Posted in: art, La Biennale di Venezia, no comment, Venice