17 Oct 2021

Yuki Kihara goes to the Venice Biennale

From Standing Room Only, 1:33 pm on 17 October 2021

It'll be a year later than planned, and the artist might not be able to attend to install her work or meet the international guests.  But Yuki Kihara will be the first Pasifika artist to represent Aotearoa at the 2022 Venice Biennale.

Paradise Camp is the name of her work, with themes including climate change and small island ecologies, queer rights, and giving Fa'afafine the attention and respect they have struggled to gain.

Yuki has incorporated video filmed in Samoa with a large local cast and crew, as well as photography and archival research.   

Paradise Camp has a prized location in Venice.  It's the Arsenale, one of the two main Biennale hubs.

The Arts Council of New Zealand Toi Aotearoa supports our Biennale artists financially and logistically .  But they'll have to make big changes because of Covid-19 restrictions.  

Chair of the Arts Council, Caren Rangi, is the Commissioner of New Zealand's presentation at the Biennale.  She tells Lynn Freeman they won't be sending attendants to Venice.  Instead they'll use locally-employed people to install and work with visitors on site.

First, Yuki Kihara explains how she made the most of the extra time to keep working on Paradise Camp.

The Venice Biennale starts on the 23rd of April next year.