Native Tongue XR in Reflection

Monumental Resistance at the 59th Venice Biennale

April 2024. Milan based Jenna Grace, art researcher and historian at Fondazione Prada, reflects on Native Tongue XR, Simone Leigh’s US Pavilion and Maria Eichhorn’s German Pavilion, projects changing the notion of monument at the 59th Venice Biennale:
"Amongst all the speculation and all the strangers everywhere for the opening of the 60th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, Cecilia Alemani’s boldly curated 59th reliquary and its wave of concurrent collateral events still resonate. In 2022, the surreal The Milk Of Dreams theme stirred connections with international movements interrogating colonial monuments. Not all projects had the sentient scale of Simone Leigh’s literal wrapping and reinvention of the US Pavilion to highlight histories of presidential slavery. Two of the most insightful reinventions of monuments didn’t really exist at all. …"