Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana – 2020 Exhibitions

‘Henri Cartier-Bresson: Le Grand Jeu’ and ‘Youssef Nabil. Once Upon a Dream’ at Palazzo Grassi and ‘Untitled, 2020’ at Punta della Dogana

From 11 July 2020 to 26 February 2021

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There is great expectation in Venice as well as around the world for the opening of three major new exhibitions on 11 July, 2020 at the two venues of the Pinault Collection in Venice:

  • - The photography exhibition dedicated to Henri Cartier-Bresson, titled ‘Henri Cartier-Bresson: Le Grand Jeu’ at Palazzo Grassi, Venice.
  • - The monographic exhibition dedicated to the Egyptian artist Youssef Nabil titled ‘Youssef Nabil. Once Upon a Dream’ at Palazzo Grassi, Venice.
  • - The collective exhibition conceived and curated by Caroline Bourgeois, Muna El Fituri and the artist Thomas Houseago, ‘Untitled, 2020 - Three perspectives on the art of the present’ at Punta della Dogana, Venice.


And now let's see what is in store at the three exhibitions:

‘Henri Cartier-Bresson exhibition: Le Grand Jeu’ at Palazzo Grassi

From 11 July, 2020 to 26 February, 2021

The exhibition dedicated to Henri Cartier-Bresson, ‘Le Grand Jeu’ at Palazzo Grassi in Venice, focuses on an original project where five exceptional curators - photographer Annie Leibovitz, director Wim Wenders, writer Javier Cercas, the General Conservator and Director of the Prints and Photography Department of the Bibliothèque nationale de France, Sylvie Aubenas, and collector Francois Pinaulthave been invited to enrich and reinterpret the work of Henri Cartier-Bresson by choosing around fifty images starting from the original ‘Master Collection’. The ‘Master Collection’, of which there are five samples, is a selection of 385 images that Cartier-Bresson, at the invitation of his collector friends Jean and Dominique de Menil, considered in the early seventies to be the most significant of his artistic production.

This Grassi Palace exhibition in 2020, conceived and coordinated by Matthieu Humery, has been co-organised with the Bibliothèque nationale de France and in partnership with the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation and will be displayed in Paris in spring 2021.


Henry Cartier-Bresson - short biography

Henry Cartier-Bresson was born in Chanteloup in 1908 from a wealthy French family. As a young man, he began his career as a painter and became a pupil of Andrè Lothe. However, due to poor results with painting, he devoted himself to photography. The surrealistic photos taken in Mexico and Europe during his travels between 1932 and 1935 made him famous as an art photographer in New York. In 1937, when he returned to France, he devoted himself to photojournalism. During the Second World War he entered the French resistance but was captured by Nazi troops. He then managed to escape in time to photograph the liberation of Paris in 1944. In 1953 he published ‘The decisive moment’ which would be considered the ‘model to follow’ for all reportage photographers.


‘Youssef Nabil. Once Upon a Dream’ at Palazzo Grassi

From 11 July, 2020 to 26 February, 2021

‘Once Upon a Dream’ at Palazzo Grassi in Venice, is a monographic exhibition where artist Youssef Nabil presents specific subjects of his artistic research such as the search for identity sources, the ideological, social and political concerns of the 21st century and melancholy for a distant past. Youssef Nabil's photographs, made with the traditional Egyptian technique used for photographic portraits and film posters, are then hand painted by the artist himself. The result is the representation of a legendary Egypt suspended between symbolism and attraction. The themed Youssef Nabil exhibition shows the artists’ earliest works through to his most recent ones and is enriched by three videos made by Nabil himself: ‘Arabian Happy Ending’, ‘I Saved My Belly Dancer’ and ‘You Never Left’.


Youssef Nabil - short biography

Youssef Nabil was born in Cairo on 6 November, 1972 and began his career as a photographer in 1992 setting up scenes in which his friends interpreted melodramas. He worked as an assistant photographer in the best studios in New York and Paris and began to photograph friends and artists in their most intimate moment, i.e. as they slept. In 1999 Nabil returned to Egypt and devoted himself to pictorial photography creating portraits of writers, singers and film stars of the Arab world. In recent years, the artist, working between Paris and New York, has devoted himself to self-portraits that describe his life away from Egypt.


‘Untitled, 2020 - Three perspectives on the art of the present’ at Punta della Dogana

From 11 July to 13 December, 2020

The ‘Untitled, 2020’ exhibition at Punta della Dogana has been designed especially for the areas of Punta della Dogana and presents works by more than 60 artists from the Pinault Collection, international museums and private collections. The artworks on display range from the 20th century through to the present day and have been made using different techniques, including sculpture to video and painting to photography. The collection of works is a recreation of Thomas Houseago’s studio - the artist curator of the exhibition – in Tadao Ando’s cube room through a site-specific installation. In this room, Thomas makes his library and sources of inspiration available to visitors.

This special project is conceived and curated by Caroline Bourgeois, Muna El Fituri and Thomas Houseago and presents artists Marlene Dumas, Robert Colescott, Saul Fletcher, Llyn Foulkes, Deana Lawson, Paul McCarthy and many more!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff