ART-LANTIS – Photography Exhibition by Marco Rizzo in Venice

Art-Lantis at Belmond Hotel Cipriani in Venice

ART-LANTIS – by Marco Rizzo located on the bottom of the swimming pool at Belmond Hotel Cipriani in Venice

The swimming pool at Belmond Hotel Cipriani will be the most original exhibition venue in the Venice Lagoon from 20th March to 10th November 2017, expanding on the artistic offer promoted by the Biennale.

Six giant photographs will be placed on the bottom of the pool, with the aim of taking artistic messages to places where people would not expect to find them. This is the concept of Art-lantis, which depicts photographs of Venice under water. The project is a tribute to a much-loved city and bears the stylistic hallmarks that made the photographer famous.

The installation required weeks of preparation. The pool had to be emptied before the photographs, specially reproduced on aluminium sheets just a few millimetres thick, could be placed on the bottom. 

Photo by Tyson Sadlo

Since the 1970s, this pool, to the temperature of which is kept constant, has been famed for being the largest in Venice (32×16). For decades it has been a preferred haunt of the jet set during the Film Festival, and is known for its quartz filtration system that uses water from the Lagoon and antibacterial agents to avoid overuse of chlorine. The effect is that guests feel as though they were swimming in the Caribbean.

About Marco Rizzo

Born in Venice on 4 September 1983, Marco Rizzo has collaborated with various institutions, fashion houses, famous architects and artists, including: Palazzo Grassi, Punta della Dogana, Venini, Furla, Fondazione Furla, Al Duca d’Aosta, Tadao Ando, Jean-Jacques Aillagon, Francesco Bonami, Francois Pinault, Mona Hatoum, Alberto Tadiello and Umberto Pelizzari.

After graduating with top marks in Performing Arts, he has won multiple awards as film director with Nero Pece: best FILM, best story, best photography, and mentions for ethics and aesthetics. He has exhibited at more than 15 personal exhibitions and 20 collectives in Italy and internationally. Highlights include the Underwater City collection at the Institutes of Culture of Vienna and Pretoria.

Photo by Marco Rizzo

Questions for the artist.. 
  • What does Venice mean to you and how do you imagine it to be in the future?

Venice is where I was born. For me it’s like a magnet. But more than the city itself, water is what really draws me. Water has always been part of my work. At first it was involuntary, but recently it’s been more deliberate. In the future I hope that my home city will be immersed, rather than submerged. My Venice won’t be destroyed by a cataclysmic event but will be cleaned and forced back into contact with nature. 

  • As a photographer, which are the most alternative places in Venice to take pictures of?

I’ve always tried to find hidden places to capture with my videos and photographs. I’ve never been interested in clichés. I’m thinking back to my first documentary film: “Nero Pece”. Venice is waiting to be discovered, it’s wonderful to wander aimlessly around its little narrow streets. It’s when you are not looking for anything particular that the city gives you the best of itself, and lets you discover those amazing, hidden places. My advice is not to be afraid of going off the beaten track.

  • Why water?

Water fascinates me. If I think of the depths of the deep sea, it terrifies me. Perhaps it attracts me so much because I still haven’t fully understood it. Water can be contained, it can slide over shapes, submerge, fill, it can be the subject of a project or be left in the background. It’s a theme that can be developed in many ways, and it always gives me new ideas to express new concepts. Today’s liquid society helps me, that’s one example.

Photo by Marco Rizzo

Marco Rizzo explains why Belmond Hotel Cipriani

  • What does Belmond Hotel Cipriani have that other hotels don’t have, and why did you decide to embark on this adventure?

Essentially, Belmond Hotel Cipriani is a friendly place – not so much because of the building, but because of the people who manage it and bring it to life. I’ve discovered some amazing people here over the years, they are always ready to help. They’ve encouraged me as an artist. The idea behind this project is very simple and quite fun. Laura Di Bert was helping me to set up my first exhibition at the hotel, and we didn’t know where to put one of the pictures. As often happens, I was joking, and I said: “We could throw it in the pool”. The absurdity of the idea made us laugh, but I saw from Laura’s eyes that there was something in the idea… Maybe it wasn’t so absurd. And here we are, a few years later. Our idea has become reality. I will leave it to you to judge.

  • What would you be if not a photographer?

I don’t just make a living from photography, I spend my days doing lots of other things, from art in the generic sense to education. Basically, I like relating to people, getting involved.

  • Is there a positive message in these photographs of Venice underwater? If so, what is it?

The message I want to convey is only positive: you need to make an effort and go beyond the picture itself, which for a photograph might seem strange. The question to ask yourself is why would a Venetian decide to take a series of pictures of his city underwater? Does he hate the city that much? My Venice isn’t destroyed, but submerged. The buildings are intact. I like to imagine them cleansed of the dirt created by humans.

  • What does Venice give a young artist, and what does it take away?

Venice isn’t an easy place. Basically, it is used by the people who work here. Not many people think about its inhabitants. Venice offers lots of great opportunities for artists to exhibit their work, but they are places only few can benefit from.

Belmond Hotel Cipriani

Guests staying at the hotel will be provided with goggles so they can admire the photographs up close as they swim underwater.

To enquire about staying at Belmond Hotel Cipriani in 2017 to experience this exhibition and to discover some of our unique Partner Offers at Belmond Hotels in Italy and Mallorca please view the following link HERE 


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