Exhibitions2015Gav (Library Bar): 56th Venice Biennale

Gav (Library Bar): 56th Venice Biennale

7 May 15

Bruchium - Al Forno

'Gav' was a site-specific LibraryBar presented on the occasion of the 56th Venice Biennale. Located in Calle del Forno passage, between the entrance of the Arsenale and the Via Garibaldi en route to the Giardini, Gav was a curatorial and interactive project that evolved within the lifetime of the Biennale.

In keeping with Gavin Turk’s playful references to art history and identity, Gav is also a homage to the celebrated Parisian cafés in Montparnasse where artists, including Picasso, often exchanged artworks when they were unable to settle their bills with cash.

For Gav, Turk had hung empty frames and blank canvases on the walls in a crowded salon style, providing a challenging invitation for artists to transform or replace the blank frames and canvases with their own artwork. In return artists were offered drinks and a certificate to validate the transactions over the course of the seven-month project.

The walls of the LibraryBar were slowly populated with an array of intriguing framed art works from artists of all calibers, styles, abilities and ambitions. Turk personally monitored each contribution, only accepting art works he deemed worthy of inclusion or those which rose to the spirit of the exchange. The project related to Turk’s ongoing dialogue with the meaning, value and authorship of works of art.