Green light – An artistic workshop
Shared learning
Contested agencies
With Christine Macel and Angela Vettese

June 24, 2 – 6pm  



[I]t is to works of art that has fallen the burden of wordlessly asserting what is barred to politics. […] This is not a time for political art, but politics has migrated into autonomous art […]

– Theodor W. Adorno, 1974



What role does art occupy in the realm of international cultural politics and what responsibilities do artists and art institutions bear in the context of sociopolitical conflicts, international crisis, and a gradually omnipresent feeling of uncertainty?


In her curatorial concept for the 57th International Art Exhibition Viva Arte Viva, Christine Macel advocates the collective return to the appreciation of art as a sanctuary, as an eclectic site for “reflection, individual expression, freedom, and for fundamental questions.” Macel celebrates art as an autonomous yet engaged haven for dreams and utopias – especially in times when the world gets shaken time and again. 


On June 24, the Green light participants are welcoming Macel in the their auditorium where she will give an introduction into her conception followed by a key-note lecture by art critic and scholar Angela Vettese (IUAV). Vettese underscores the Biennale as a controversial yet relevant place for political discourse and claims that in the context of the unprecedented multiplicity of national pavilions, contemporary art is increasingly being instrumentalized as a vehicle for political dialogue, that is, for cultural diplomacy. In the course of the afternoon Macel and Vettese will explore their seemingly divergent views in collaboration with the Green light participants and Biennale visitors. The afternoon will kick off with an Ideological Tour by Vettese in the course of which she will illustrate her stance in several pavilions. 




2pm Ideological Tour through National Pavilions guided by Angela Vettese


4pm Introductory words by Christine Macel


4.20pm Lecture by Angela Vettese on the Biennale as a controversial yet relevant space for political discourse 


5pm Open discussion with Angela Vettese and Christine Macel, moderated by Clemens Rettenbacher



Following her studies in art history, Christine Macel was a curator of the heritage and inspector of artistic creation for the “Délégation aux Arts Plastiques” of the French Ministry of Culture (from 1995). Since 2000 she has been Chief Curator at the Musée national d’art moderne – Centre Pompidou in Paris, where she is responsible for the Department of “Création contemporaine et prospective”, which she founded and developed. She was the curator of the French Pavilion at the Biennale Arte 2013 (Anri Sala) and the Belgian Pavilion at the Biennale Arte 2007 (Eric Duyckaerts).


Angela Vettese is an art critic, scholar, and curator. She is the Director of the Graduate Program in Visual Arts at the Faculty of Arts and Design of the Iuav University in Venice, where she teaches Theory and Criticism of Contemporary Art as an Associate Professor. Vettese is currently artistic director of Bologna’s annual international modern and contemporary art fair, Arte Fiera.