To mark the 70th anniversary of the exhibition of Peggy Guggenheim's collection in the Greek Pavilion at the 24th Venice Biennale, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection presents 1948: The Biennale of Peggy Guggenheim in the Project Rooms in Venice from 25 May to 25 November 2018.
Peggy Guggenheim's participation in the 1948 Venice Biennale was a landmark event. Europe – particularly Italy after two decades of the dictatorial regime – had yet to see a collection so representative of "non-objective" avant-garde art, from Cubism and Futurism to Dadaism, Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism.
"My exhibition had enormous publicity and the pavilion was one of the most popular of the Biennale. I was terribly excited by all this," said Guggenheim in Out of this Century, "But what I enjoyed most was seeing the name of Guggenheim appearing on the maps in the public gardens next to the names of Great Britain, France, Holland, Austria, Switzerland, Poland... I felt as though I were a new European country."
The show will partially recreate the setting of the pavilion through selected works from the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and other prestigious loans, as well as documents, photographs, letters, and a three-dimensional model of the pavilion installation, whose layout was designed by celebrated Venetian architect Carlo Scarpa.
In conjunction with 1948: The Biennale of Peggy Guggenheim, for the first time in the last twenty years, all eleven works by Jackson Pollock that Guggenheim chose to keep for her own collection are on view in the galleries of the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni. Five of these were displayed in the 1948 Pavilion together with the other masterpieces of the historical avant-garde.