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Sponsorship announced for Lisa Reihana exhibition at 2017 Venice Biennale

27 Sep 2016

This content is tagged as Visual arts .


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New Zealand coffee company Allpress Espresso has confirmed it will sponsor New Zealand’s presentation by Lisa Reihana at the 2017 Venice Art Biennale.

With roasteries in Auckland, Dunedin, Sydney, Melbourne, London and Tokyo, Allpress has a global reach and sees support for the exhibition as a natural fit for the company.

Founder Michael Allpress says, “By its very nature art goes hand-in-hand with the coffee community. We have sponsored the arts in different ways over the years, including  supporting artists through our studio artists’ spaces in both Auckland and Melbourne.”

He says, “Art and its inventiveness, and the inspiration and discussion it informs, has been close to Allpress for a long time, without this connection being fully recognised by our larger community. We are very excited to partner with New Zealand at Venice to take this awareness to a new level.”

Lisa Reihana’s exhibition, Emissaries, will showcase New Zealand contemporary art in 2017 at the Venice Biennale, the premier international arts and culture event since 1895. The New Zealand pavilion will be housed in the Tesa dell'Isolotto, one of the oldest buildings in the Arsenale, among many permanent national pavilions. It will include Reihana’s panoramic video in Pursuit of Venus [infected], expanded and augmented with a series of new photographic works.

Allpress will join the project as a supporting partner in addition to being a hospitality partner for opening events for the New Zealand exhibition in Venice. Meanwhile, the company will host a series of conversations about Lisa’s work; celebrating the value of artists within their local communities. The first will take place at the Dalston Roastery in London on 5 October with Lisa Reihana and Rhana Devenport, Curator of Emissaries.  Other events in Allpress roasteries in Australia (Melbourne) and New Zealand (Auckland) will follow.

New Zealand at Venice Commissioner, Alastair Carruthers, says, “Sponsors of art are hard to find these days, but when an agreement like this is reached, the benefits for all parties quickly become evident. Allpress is an adventurous, smart and international company -  a great fit with Lisa Reihana - and its support for Emissaries will make a tremendous difference.”   

Notes to editors:

New Zealand at the Venice Biennale

New Zealand’s arts development agency, Creative New Zealand, funds and manages New Zealand’s presence at the Venice Art Biennale for the almost seven month duration. 

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa is a Key Partner and for the first time, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki is a Presenting Partner.

The New Zealand at Venice patrons generously contribute around a third of the budget for New Zealand’s project at the Venice Art Biennale.

The Venice Art Biennale is widely recognised as the pre-eminent international art exhibition in the world. In 2015 almost 90 countries had a presence – and the Biennale attracted more than 8,000 accredited journalists and 500,000 visitors. 

An official presence there provides a career development opportunity at the highest level for New Zealand contemporary visual artists. It brings the New Zealand pavilion to the attention of global media, art institutions, experts and gallerists and offers professional development opportunities for the curators, exhibition attendants and team members including the technical, design and artistic contributors to the project.

New Zealand has exhibited at the Venice Art Biennale since 2001. New Zealand artists who have exhibited are: Jacqueline Fraser and Peter Robinson (2001); Michael Stevenson (2003) et al. (2005); Judy Millar and Francis Upritchard (2009); Michael Parekowhai (2011); Bill Culbert (2013) and Simon Denny (2015).

Lisa Reihana, artist

Lisa Reihana (b 1964) completed a Masters in Design from the School of Visual Art and Design, Unitec in Auckland in 2014 and graduated with a Bachelor in Fine Arts from Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland in 1987.

Of Ngāpuhi and Ngāti Hine, Ngāi Tū descent, she lives and works in Auckland.

Reihana’s work has featured in significant museums and major exhibition projects including Global Feminisms at Brooklyn Museum, the Yinchuan Biennale, Havana Biennale, the Noumea Biennale, the Liverpool Biennale, the International Arts Festival at Samstag Museum, Adelaide, the 12th Biennale of Sydney, the Auckland Triennial at Auckland Art Gallery, the 2nd and 4th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art at Queensland Gallery of Modern Art, Paradise Now? Contemporary Art from the Pacific at Asia Society Museum, New York, the Amsterdam Film + Media Arts Festival, imagineNATIVE, New Media & Film Festival Toronto, The Trickster at Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, South Korea, and Toi Toi Toi at Museum Fridericianum, Kassel.

Reihana was made an Arts Laureate by the New Zealand Arts Foundation in 2014. She was shortlisted for the Signature Art Prize at the Singapore Art Museum in 2014 for in Pursuit of Venus; as well as the Double Take Anne Landa Award, Art Gallery of New South Wales in 2009 and the Walters Prize at the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki in 2008, both for Digital Marae. She has recently been shortlisted for the 2016 Walters Prize for in Pursuit of Venus [infected].

Rhana Devenport, curator

Rhana Devenport is director of Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. She was director of Govett-Brewster Art Gallery (2006-2013) and held senior positions with the Biennale of Sydney (2005-2006), Artspace NZ (2005) and the Sydney Festival (2004) and was Senior Project Officer for the Asia Pacific Triennial with the Queensland Art Gallery (1994-2004). Her curatorial and publishing projects include projects with Peter Robinson, Fiona Pardington, Judith Wright, Nalini Malani, NS Harsha, Alfredo and Isabel Aquilizan, Song Dong, Yin Xiuzhen, Zhang Peili, Lee Mingwei and Lisa Reihana.

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For media enquiries contact: Sarah Pomeroy, sarah.pomeroy@creativenz.govt.nz