Red Regatta (Coppa del Presidente della Repubblica)
Red Regatta (Coppa del Presidente della Repubblica) by artist Melissa McGill (b. 1969) was on view at Magazzino Italian Art Foundation from December 2018 - April 2019. The Campo Box (Ghetto Nuovo) is currently on view at Magazzino.
Red Regatta is an homage to Venice’s maritime traditions and culture and a meditation on the impact of climate change that threaten its future. The red sails of Red Regatta signal love and passion, urgency and alarm: a global call to action uniting audiences to confront the impact of climate change that threatens specifically Venice but also the entire planet.
Red Regatta (Coppa del Presidente della Repubblica), 2018
A beautifully hand-painted photograph, with more than fifty shades of red pigment developed by the artist. On view in the entrance hall from December 2018 - April 2019, the artwork articulates each boat’s unique profile and reflections against the contrasting sky and sea. The image was taken during the Associazione Vela al Terzo annual Regatta Coppa del Presidente della Repubblica in Venice’s Bacino di San Marco in September 2018.
Red Regatta (Rossi Per Red Regatta), 2018
A segment of the Red Regatta project. The artwork is a unique artist’s book presented in a slip case made with a hand-painted red cloth cover which refers to the color of the boat’s sails.
On view in the Research Center, the handmade book contains McGill’s 50 original hand-painted sail cloth swatches, each painted in a unique shade of red, created with pigment and mixed by the artist. This color guide serves as the key to Red Regatta sail colors, with handwritten notes on each pigment and page. Signed by the artist.
The Campo Box (Ghetto Nuovo)
Part of the larger series called The Campi, The Campo Box (Ghetto Nuovo) is an ambient sound box in the shape of the negative space of a campo (city square) in Venice, Italy. The project, on view in the Research Center, explores the conversation between the visible and the invisible that defines public space, the tangible architecture, the daily life of a community and the ephemeral ambiance and history.
The Campi project was exhibited in Venice in May, 2017, coinciding with the opening week of La Biennale di Venezia – 57th International Art Exhibition. The Campi, curated by Chiara Spangaro, was on view at three locations, notably Casa Studio Scatturin, designed by renowned architect Carlo Scarpa, and at Ca’Tron as well as Giorgio Mastinu Fine Art.
Both The Campi and Red Regatta are major projects by McGill, focusing on raising awareness of Venetian life and culture.
Artist Melissa McGill, a Beacon resident, has been working on major site-specific public projects internationally and locally, from her large-scale sculptural work Constellation on Pollepel Island in the Hudson River to a two-part site-specific project, Palmas, at Manitoga: The Russel Wright Design Center, both located in the Hudson Valley, New York. McGill works in a variety of media, including photography, painting, drawing, sculpture, sound, light and immersive installation. Melissa McGill lived in Venice from 1991-93, and has returned regularly for inspiration, research and artistic collaborations for over two decades.
Magazzino Italian Art Foundation promotes Italian contemporary art and culture not only in the United States but also abroad. It supports local and international artists who focus on Italy in their work.
The Permanent Mission of Italy to the United Nations, working in collaboration with Magazzino Italian Art Foundation and artist Melissa McGill, presented an exhibition of related and preparatory works to preview McGill’s latest project Red Regatta ahead of its debut in Venice.
Q&A with artist Melissa McGill and journalist Julia Felsenthal.
Red Regatta is an independent public art project created by artist Melissa McGill that will activate Venice’s lagoon and canals with large-scale regattas of traditional vela al terzo sailboats hoisted with hand-painted red sails. Unfolding in multiple parts from May through November 2019 over the duration of the 58th Venice Biennale, the Red Regatta convenes more than two hundred and fifty Venetian partners working closely with the artist, ranging from local sailors and artisans to art students, to present an unprecedented spectacle that calls awareness to the central issues that face Venice and its residents today: the displacement of local inhabitants due to the imminent threat of climate change and sea level rise and mass tourism to the region.