Steel band playing for the opening of the British Pavilion


Hello,  I’m Alison the Arts Manager for the British Council in Italy.

I’m just back from Venice and the opening of the British Pavilion, which the British Council manages. This year Jeremy Deller was commissioned and I loved the exhibition entitled English Magic – particularly the film which is available for online viewing here:

The film brings together the different stories which Deller presents in the various rooms in the pavilion – I particularly loved the work featuring an angry William Morris and now am a proud owner of a do-it-yourself, takeaway print of it, which pavilion visitors are invited to make. I have also decided to take up steel drumming – the photo above is of the steel band who played at the opening and feature in the film and who were inspiring.

You can see some more (professional) images of the exhibition here:

I also recommend you watch Deller talking about the show here:

Apart from the British Pavilion, the British Council also supports other UK artists appearing at the biennale, in other national pavilions and elsewhere.  I am particularly pleased that Gioni, the curator, invited 11 other UK artists to show, including the 3 youngest artists showing, all of whom the British Council is supporting, more info here:

My colleague from France particularly liked the video piece by emerging artist Ed Atkins at the Arsenale. More on the other artists in another blog next week.

Alison (Arts Manager British Council Italy)