“50 Moons of Saturn will be a large group show of rather young artists, most of them in their thirties. But, I don’t want it simply to be another young art festival, so I have introduced a theme that I hope will give the show its atmosphere: the influence of Saturn.
Of course, this can imply many things, from a fascination with cosmic phenomena to an interest in inspirational states of mind. My hope is that
the show doesn’t become too introverted or gloomy. The melancholic is also someone who says no to an all too simplistic notion of collective ‘progress’, and the temperament can perhaps involve a kind of resistance. Also, melancholy can be a state of inspirational bliss.
The Triennial has been divided into three exhibitions: one group show, 50 Moons of Saturn, and two solo exhibitions. The idea is that the other two institutions involved (Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art and Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengoalso) are given the opportunity to present two large projects by two key artists. In this case they will be Olafur Eliasson and Paul Chan respectively, artists I have worked with and written about for many years. I think they represent interesting approaches to the infinitely rich theme of saturnine influence. There is science, cosmology, as well as wild metaphysical speculation.
I really don’t know yet if there will be any crossovers between 50 Moons of Saturn and the 53rd Venice Biennale. I have been involved in some 50 shows in my life, and I’m sure they all somehow influence each other, but it is not how I actively approach things. I see them as totally different projects, and Venice is a more complex operation. The good thing is that I now know much more about young Italian artists, which is a good preparation for working with the biggest artistic endeavor this nation realises every second year.
Turin is a very privileged place for contemporary art; after all the city has two of the most prominent institutions in Europe and a very ambitious art
fair that happens at the same time as my show.
An exhibition like this can create productive links between the institutions and make visible what an interesting city this is for art. I’m happy they asked me to do this, and I really do have a feeling that the people here want it to become a beautiful event.”2 Turin Triennial, 6 November 2008-18 January 2009