2nd Toilets Pavilion of the Art Biennale di Venezia

review by Jizaino, 10 September 2013

2nd Toilets Pavilion
Symbiotic event of the 55th Art Biennale di Venezia
01 June - 24 November 2013
Arsenale and Giardini of Venezia, Italy
opening times: 10.00 - 18.00
closed on monday

Permanent link: http://tinyurl.com/paviliont

Read also:
review of the 1st edition of the Toilets Pavilion
complete review of the 55th Art Biennale di Venezia


Not for provocation or in derision.

The Toilets Pavilion is a spontaneous project: no director, no curator, no selection, no censorship.

Read the complete introduction to the Toilets Pavilion.

As in the first edition, we want to make a parallelism between the artworks present in the Toilets Pavilion and those included in the annals of modern and contemporary art; indeed, this time right with one of the artworks present at the 55th International Art Exhibition: one of the drawings from the Leningrad Album by Evgenij Kozlov.

Evgenij Kozlov, drawing from the "Leningrad Album"


For this edition we put under examination almost all the bathrooms, both in the Arsenale and Giardini; the visit to all these exhibition rooms is a considerable involvement that adds to the already huge offer of the Biennale; thus we repeat the call to the readers who want to visit this or the next editions, to contribute with their own photo reportages.

As in the first edition, we have examined just those expressions that can be considered artistic or that can be related to the contents of the Biennale or that more generally reflect the actualities of contemporary society; thus personal messaging, party or soccer slogans are neglected.

Generally, the expressive figure is unchanged from the previous edition: this is synonym of a technical spontaneity that completely benefits the content.

Unlike the first edition, there are no evident citations to the artworks or the themes suggested by the Biennale or to the work of curators and artists: perhaps it is a clue that this 55th International Art Exhibition have not raised enthusiasm in the public, or it could be a symptom of a detachment, a distance that have bore incomprehension. The only one comment to the Biennale is an argute and banteringly critique.

Also this year the predominant techniques are the felt-tip and ballpoint pen (though they seem to have overcome the monochrome of black), other than the stickers. The artists who have left their own action are mostly anglophone or francophone: sign of globalization or lack of extra-European tourism? These manifest more attention to drawing, while the Italian presences are almost all focused on slogans.

All the artworks present in the previous edition are no more existent: this means that the cleaning service this year is in full order. The fact that the artworks are ephemeral, confers value to the reportage of the Toilets Pavilion for its function as archive of the folk thought; for this sake, we would recall the artwork from the previous edition “WALLS CAN BE CLEANED, SOCIETY CAN'T” signed D. B. Cooper, the famous plane hijacker who in the 70s did manage, probably, to get away with it.


With this second edition of the Toilets Pavilion, we outline an immutable expressive coherence, which confirms the fundamental universality of the most intimate human expression. The prevalent stylistic ingenuity and the technical irrelevance free from virtuous cosmetics reveal the most sincere devotion to the message as alpha and omega of the artistic representation.

Photographic gallery

Jizaino -