Andrius Arutiunian, Armenian Pavilion at the 59th Venice Biennale

23 Apr 2022 – 27 Nov 2022

Regular hours

10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00
10:00 – 18:00

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Campo della Tana

Veneto, Italy

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Drawing from Andrius Arutiunian’s research, the Pavilion explores forms of organisation and world ordering, both musical and political, which remain outside the Western imaginaries.


Here, the gharīb is read as a dissonance to the prevailing understandings of time, rhythm, and attunement.

The exhibition is composed of a series of new objects and installations. The Pavilion uses sound and music as its main elements, with a large-scale piece called You Do Not Remember Yourself at its centre – an instrument playing with natural resonances and diaphony.

The Pavilion begins with the Midnight Practice, a gathering in a small Venetian courtyard from midnight to the early morning. During these liminal hours, a symbolic dish is consumed, a Gharīb oghi served, and a series of hypnotic musical exercises is played. Subdued, unhurried, and hushed, the Midnight Practice unfolds as a collective attempt of listening and being together.

The Midnight Practice reconnects with the ArmenianGreek mystic and composer Gurdjieff and his memorable gatherings. One of the first thinkers (and quite possibly charlatans) to introduce a syncretic reading of Eastern philosophy to the West, Gurdjieff stayed a rather enigmatic and conflicting figure among his contemporaries, with his constant fluctuation between mystical appearances, bizarre coincidences, and bouts of simultaneous drunkenness and somberness.

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Andrius Arutiunian

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