May 15, 2013 - Estonian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale - Dénes Farkas
May 15, 2013

Dénes Farkas

Dénes Farkas, Evident in Advance (detail), 2013. Inkjet print, 1500 x 2000 mm. © Dénes Farkas.

Dénes Farkas
Evident in Advance
1 June–24 November 2013

Opening: 31 May 2013, 5pm
Preview: 29–31 May 2013, 10am–9pm

Palazzo Malipiero
San Samuele Square, S. Marco 3199, 2nd floor
(Vaporetto stop San Samuele)

“If I don’t trust this evidence why should I trust any evidence?,” Wittgenstein examined himself in On Certainty. Dénes Farkas’ work is haunted by a drama of not delivering a trust to a singular evidence of this world, a world as he found it. Hysterically reproduced, paper maquettes of choreographed architecture, imprisoned within a clumsy, photographic frame, are abstract shelters for imagined and unspoken texts. Words are characters in performance of a world as a text. As a proposition, Farkas’ Evident In Advance is “an absent book” and yet “the book to come.” A piece of spatial, rhythmical writing, the exhibition is designed as a quintet of interiors, woven of autonomous though intertwined, poetic fragments of a quasi-domestic setting: a library, a garden, an absent cinema, a spatial book, an obsession chamber (a locus of deranged architect and non-writer). “A story? No. No stories, never again,” Farkas repeats after Blanchot, while rehearsing his art of ultimate denial and rejection. The redundant, the generic, the entangled, the withdrawn, “simplex sigillum veri”—the artist’s chambers of stubborn will—lead towards a self-evidence: the closed eyelids of the character; an absolute failure and impossibility. Red sky. Red cow. Red Wittgenstein. We are at the core of Farkas’ delirious “meaningful meaninglessness”: actors of an absurd “dysfunctional game,” victims of a structural slapstick, puzzled by a failed expectation and non-delivery. Farkas is Beckettian architect who practices the negative space of a narrative sleepwalking and conceptual impasse. The viewer insecurely skates on a Wittgensteinian slippery, thin-ice surface, powered by a cacophonic friction which simultaneously proliferates and subtracts the possible plot, erasing previous content and neutralizing all imagined acts of will. And yet, the new page is being filled up with letters and their games and, most likely, the new utterances are being pronounced in an overwhelming silence. Evidence (in advance), an (imaginary) encyclopedia.

“All returning to that anxious word Fail. You could fail. What if you fail? Don’t ask—trespass. Turn reality backward, like words in a mirror. No Trespassing—meaning trespass. Don’t Dare—meaning dare. Then as a full measure of commitment, think of someone like Rimbaud when he writes, ‘I called on my executioners to bite the ends of their guns…Disaster was my God.’ Well put, trespasser. Literature depends as much on the crowbar as the pen.”
–Bruce Duffy, “No Trespassing,” in Evident in Advance exhibition catalogue

The artist Dénes Farkas was born 1974 in Budapest. He lives and works in Tallinn, Estonia. The exhibition is curated by Adam Budak.

The Estonian Pavilion is organized by the Center for Contemporary Arts, Estonia, Commissioner: Maria Arusoo
Project Assistants: Rebeka Põldsam, Maarja Kungla, Kulla Laas

Writers: Bruce Duffy, Daniele Monticelli, Adam Budak, Studio Miessen, Maria Arusoo, Dénes Farkas, Maurice Blanchot, Adriana Cavarero
Book: Zak Group & Sternberg Press
Architecture: Studio Miessen

Starting from this year, the Estonian Pavilion will be launched, together with the Estonian Academy of Arts fine arts summer school- Nordic Baltic Art School (NBAS) in Venice, in collaboration with the Nordic and Baltic countries. This is the pilot project approved by the KUNO network (, which we hope will become a new tradition involving art students in the Venice Biennale.

The inauguration of the Estonian Pavilion at the 55th International Art Exhibition – la Biennale di Venezia will take place on 31 May, 5pm in the presence of the Estonian Minister of Culture, Mr. Rein Lang. The vernissage will be followed by a cocktail reception at Palazzo Malipiero Rose Garden with special performances by musician Maria Minerva and artist KroOt Juurak (by invitation only).

Estonia’s participation at the 55th International Art Exhibition in Venice is financed by the Estonian Ministry of Culture.

Supported by the Attorneys at Law Borenius, the Embassy of the United States, Estonia, and the British Council.

We are grateful for the assistance of Kumu Art Museum, Europrinting, Papyrus, Artproof, Sadolin, Archiv Leitner, Ludwig Wittgenstein Trust, Nordic Hotel Forum, Matogard OÜ, Liviko, Pädeste Gourmet and DSV-Global Transport and Logistics.

More information: Maria Arusoo, commissioner, maria [​at​]


Estonian Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale: Dénes Farkas
Estonian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale
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