Foreigners Everywhere (Self-portrait)

verticale 2
Claire Fontaine
double-sided, wall or window mounted neon, framework, transformers, cables and fittings
In a contemporary moment in which the concept of nomadism (and also the ease of being nomad) is at the highest levels of use, study and speculation, the curator Adriano Pedrosa chooses to compose his own title for this 60th Venice Biennale using the adjective “foreigners” (from the Latin extrānĕus > “foreigner” “stranger” or “external”). Foreigners Everywhere places us before a range of conditions of different nature and with infinite declinations, from the more strictly etymological ones to other more political and even psychological-introspective ones. “Wherever you go and wherever you are you will always meet foreigners and, meanwhile, you too are or have been foreign to something or someone, outside or inside you”. The work of the Italian-British collective Claire Fontaine (Fulvia Carnevale and James Thornhill) which opens the path of the string factories with the neon writing “Foreigners Everywhere”, makes us aware of this possibility, reminding us of this current human condition of estrangement and urging us to abandon any form of racism. Precisely racism or rather contemporary racisms - in their most diverse forms - are what Pedrosa wants to fight with this Biennial, starting from the world of art (and artists) to arrive at theorizing something more global, anthropological, which is part of all of us in our daily lives. -Maria Chiara Valacchi