Sharon Hayes: Ricerche: three

55th Venice Biennale, Italy
June 1 – November 24, 2013

Production | Acquisition Grant

This work was gifted to the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston through the support of VIA Art Fund.

Ricerche: three, by American artist Sharon Hayes, debuted in 2013 at The Encyclopedic Palace at the 55th Venice Biennale, curated by Massimiliano Gioni. Supported by VIA Art Fund, Ricerche: three received the prestigious Golden Lion special mention. For this work, Hayes used Pier Paolo Pasolini’s brilliant cinéma vérité film Comizi d’Amore (1963) as the guidepost for a contemporary inquiry into the “sexual problem” in the United States in 2013.

The first of a number of works that comprise the series Ricerche, Ricerche: three consists of interviews with 35 students at an all-women’s college in western Massachusetts. The interview, conducted by Hayes, unfolds on camera in a confounding way, as the viewer is unsure how many people are being interviewed and while subjects slowly follow Hayes as the camera shifts across the group from left to right.Using the context of an all-women’s college (with only 47 such institutions remaining in the US), Ricerche: three attempts to address the contradiction that such gender-segregated institutions are “behind” and “ahead” of the rest of society.

To learn more, visit The 55th Venice Biennale and Tanya Leighton Gallery. 

Images: Sharon Hayes, Ricerche: three, 2013, Single channel HD video, 38 minutes, Edition of 5 + 1 AP, HD video still, Courtesy of the artist and Tanya Leighton, Berlin. Collection of ICA Boston, purchased with funds provided by VIA Art Fund, 2013.