Hiroshi Watanabe’s Real Venice

Fearing the intimacy of cinema spaces, I had only recently watched Black Swan on DVD.  Immediately, I am reminded of Hiroshi Watanabe’s works for the recent Real Venice exhibition at the 54th Venice Biennale.  It was on view from 4 June to 30 September 2011 at the Abbey of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice but it is now on show at Somerset House in London.

In Real Venice, 14 internationally renowned artists created a series of original photographic images which are reflective of Venice’s beauty and mystery.  The artists are Lynne Cohen, Philip-Lorca diCorcia, Antonio Girbés, Nan Goldin, Pierre Gonnord, Dionisio Gonzalez, Candida Höfer, Tiina Itkonen, Mimmo Jodice, Tim Parchikov, Matthias Schaller, Jules Spinatsch, Robert Walker and Hiroshi Watanabe.

Hiroshi Watanabe has been working on various series of portraits with Japanese themes such as Kabuki actors, Bunraku dolls, Noh masks, and love dolls.  With intent to focus on the rich tradition of masks and costumes in Venice, Watanabe collaborated with the Pantakin Theatre Company for a series of portraits incorporating masks found in Venice.

Selected works by Watanabe by the Real Venice exhibition

Marta Marchi as Strega (Silhouette)

Marco Andreatta as Pulcinella

Marta Marchi as Strega

Alvise D’Ambrosi as Capitano (Silhouette)

© 2011 Hiroshi Watanabe. All Rights Reserved

All artworks in Real Venice have been donated by the artists to be sold in aid of Venice in Peril.

Masks are mysterious, peculiar and enigmatic accessories, as with Venice and her enchantment.  I feel lightheaded and intoxicated by Black Swan the movie, Venice the floating island, Watanabe and his amazing interpretation of disconnection and most importantly, the power and beauty of art.  Today, in my mundane and dreary schedule, something exciting and extraordinary happened and I didn’t even leave my desk.  I believe in the power and beauty of art and hopefully, you do too.

X Sybil

(All images from Hiroshi Watanabe’s website)

About fashionartisan
Bringing out the art in fashion

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