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Sarah Sze about the US pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale

Installation in progress for Sarah Sze’s “Triple Point,” 2013, at the United States pavilion, Venice, for the 55th Venice Biennale, May 2013.

RIRKRIT TIRAVANIJA: What was your starting point when you began thinking about making something in the US pavilion? Were you engaged with the space itself or the history of the place?

SARAH SZE: I’d say both. The pavilion, which is from 1930, is loosely based on a small Palladian villa. You walk in and there’s the rotunda with its two symmetrical wings. There’s a whole hierarchy around space in this Palladian idea, and I was immediately intrigued by how I might change that hierarchy. The pavilion is also a funny space, circulationwise, because when you walk in you usually have to choose whether to go left or right, and then you have to double back on yourself. This time, the front door won’t be used: I’m making one of the emergency exits into the entrance.

RT: So you are creating a very clear narrative in terms of how people walk through the space?

SS: Yes, exactly. The first room

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