wandering into random old buildings overlooking the canals, i encountered surreal South Pacific costumed and masked actors in alluring twisted videos and photos (Never Say Goodbye by Wu Tien-Chang), beautifully mysterious plasticine and wood sculptures in a park (Ursula von Rydingsvard), an exhibit by 20 artists from Los Angeles, mythological nature photographs by Helen Sear (...the Rest is Smoke), and, my favorite, Inverso Mundus, by AES+F- a video projection in a long long tunnel-type building on 3 huge screens depicting a world turned topsy turvy. set to dramatic classical music, police and street kids caressed each other, children boxed with the elderly, women in high heels and couture erotically imprisoned sexualized men... bizarre and fascinating and determined to present itself as it was, with no apologies.
There were so many events (hundreds) hidden like so many treasure map gems throughout the floating city among its tantalizing misty canals, enticing in the heat- it would have taken years to find them all. I'm glad I had two days.
*None of the Biennale photos are mine*
Ursual von Rydingsvard summed up best what I felt from All the World's Futures:
"Walking through the Arsenale, there’s a wanting and a pain about the state of the world. We’re all at a loss about what to do with the world."