1. Briefly, what is the concept of the project with which you have applied / what artist/artists have you proposed?

2. What is the motivation for applying for the Romanian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale?

3. What are, in your opinion, the qualities that would meet the organizers’ requests and that your project possessed?

4. If you were invited to be a member of the jury for the next edition, how would you improve the evaluation procedure?


1. The concept: the positioning of the individual in time, space and language/ the way in which history affects how we contextualize ideas, things and experiences. Artist: Victor Man


2. The opportunity to present a project in a professional and highly-visible context.


3. The only request of the organizers of the contest, the Ministry of Culture, was – I quote: “the accent has to be placed on the way in which every national pavilion highlights the specificity of the respective art and culture”. It is a request easy to meet, considering the diversity of any culture in the 21st century that produces contemporary art discourse. The other requests hint at the registration for competition.

I do not make assumptions about what the members of the jury had wished. It would be better to answer themselves, it would be of interest to find out, even post facto.

And I think it would be useful to understand that, before everything, the National Pavilion presents the artist and not the artist represents the nation. 


4. I would start with the organizing procedure: public announcement of the contest at least six months in advance and allowing enough time before the deadline set up by the Biennale's organizers for the announcement of the participating projects (not like now, when the winner was announced on 22 January and the materials for catalogue had to be sent until 30 January). The announcement should be posted not only on the official website of the Ministry of Culture, but also in media, online discussion lists and forums. The evaluation board should be composed by locally and internationally validated professionals, objective, and active (not retired) at the time when the contest is organized. The selection criteria for the projects should be set up by their common accord and made public at the same time with the contest and the evaluation procedure.

Then the evaluation. The board should have an odd number of members. They may represent public institutions or may be independent, not activating in a commercial circuit (since the participation in the Venice Biennale increases the market value of the artist, which may be exploited by a curator of a private gallery).

If the submitted projects belong to curators or artists working in the same institution or in private with one member of the jury, this member should leave the jury (I would say that, in order to avoid this kind of situations, it is better if the jury is previously announced, but I do not ignore the fact that the backstage pressures might be considerable). A score should be ascertained according to the criteria and displayed on the contest website at the end of the evaluation process. I think this is enough for the moment …

However, the problem of selecting members and the composition of the jury remain unsettled. The Ministry needs experts in the field to appoint the selection board. However, the active curators will participate in the contest, rather than take part in the jury. The theoreticians, few as they are, by the nature of their profession, are not very updated with the dynamics of the phenomenon. Vicious circle …very few options.


For this reason, before calling for projects every two years, the Ministry should facilitate their production, year by year; it should take the pulse of the artists, the state or independent and non-profit art institutions in Romania and to provide real financial support, not at the limit of survival but that of resistance in international context, where it claims national representation.