A Politics of Intuition: Stan Douglas Reimagines an Era of Revolt at the 59th Venice Biennale 

Gabrielle Moser
Vancouver, 15 June 2011
Stan Douglas Vancouver, 15 June 2011, from the series 2011 ≠ 1848, chromogenic print on Dibond, 150 × 300 cm, 2021.
Photo : © Stan Douglas, courtesy of the artist, Victoria Miro, London and Venice, and David Zwirner, New York, London, Paris and Hong Kong

There is perhaps no other artist for whom a year-long delay in presenting their work at the Venice Biennale feels as though it was engineered by design, rather than by chance. Throughout his thirty-five-year practice as a filmmaker, photographer, and multimedia artist, Stan Douglas has consistently surfaced the belated meaning of historical events, finding engaging, narratively complex ways to show us how the past continues to reverberate in the present. Building image archives for events that should have registered on camera but didn’t—from failed modernist utopias and civic uprisings to the everyday labours of jazz musicians and union organizers—Douglas has made a career of reimagining past moments that, in hindsight, were historical linchpins: times when things could have gone one way, but instead went another. 

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