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Venice Biennale: Spain

Jason Hoelscher
Lara Almarcegui’s work at the Spanish Pavilion showcased not only the history of the present, but also the presence of the past. Piles of rubble sorted out into the constituent materials extracted, shaped and transformed into the pavilion, the exhibition was a powerful reminder that human constructs entail a reorganization of already-existing materials. The pavilion was at some point only raw material–soil and stone, shaped and organized by a mind: not only do we reshape what we find useful, we cart off whatever isn’t. Faced with the unstructured reintroduced into the structured, the viewer was confronted with a powerful instance of past materials and efforts that shape our experience and organization of today.