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Artist Janaina Tschäpe shares her side of Venice.
FAVORITE SPOT TO FIND INSPIRATION
My favorite activity is exploring the spirit of the city as I move through the labyrinthine canals. There’s a poem by Rilke about Venice titled "Ein Gefühl von Flut” (A Feeling of Flood Tide), where he describes the ever-changing, permanently becoming city—where a shimmer of sky strikes a feeling of the flood tide. I was in Venice some months ago to visit Berengo Studio’s giant furnace where I was to make a glass installation for their "Glasstress" exhibition this May. As I floated towards Murano, I was, as I always am, humbled and inspired by the fragmented, abstracted reflections found in the dark waters of the canal. The profound conscience of this city lives as a mirage. There is the infinite sky and the infinite mystery of what lies beneath. The impulse in all my work is to exhume the spirits and mysteries from the union of these two infinities. As I climbed the stairs from the canal to Berengo’s historic furnace, it seemed obvious to me that I was standing on the perfect representation of this union so I decided to capture its essence by casting it in glass like the ghost of a palimpsest.