Issue 1: Florian Ebner

1. How do your experiences as curator of the German Pavilion influence your current projects?

Photo: Manuel Reinartz
Photo: Manuel Reinartz

Florian Ebner: I think I have become more relaxed. The Biennale "hardens" you, I would say.
In the weeks before the opening, the pressure builds up enormously: the interview requests pour in, and at the same time everything has to be finished.
You learn to concentrate on the most important aspects, and if something does not work immediately- you learn to live with it.
That stands me in good stead in stressful times like these. The Folkwang Museum is currently featuring four completely different exhibitions, all of which have to be designed and organised at the same time.
What is more, I have remained faithful too Venice: in October, we'll present "Dancing with myself" at the Folkwang Museumm, a project with the Pinault collection and Martin Bethenod, the director of Palazzo Grassi in Venice.
And the exhibition series "with/against the flow", conceived together with the ifa, also takes up a perspective of the German Pavilion: how does artistic photography react today to a world of networked and incessantly shared images?

2. What, in your experience, should Biennale visitors have in their luggage?

Photo: CCO
Photo: CCO

Ebner: Mosquito spray, lots of water- drinking is good for concentration- and the ability to nap under a shady tree. That will refresh you! And the courage to skip certain exhibitions and programme features:  It is impossible to see everything. Instead, you should concentrate on a few exhibitions and enjoy them for longer.

3. Your insider tip: How to end a day in Venice?

Photo: Jonathan Piel, CC0
Photo: Jonathan Piel, CC0

Ebner: With a delicious pizza in "Dai Tosi", a small pizzeria just behind the Giardini grounds, or a visit to the Bagni Alberoni, an old, still left-leaning strip of beach in the far south of the Lido.
That was where Luchino Visconti shot in "Death in Venice". On long and warm summer evenings, that is the most beautiful place to end the day.

3 1/2. In 365 days, the Venice- Biennale 2017 will open its doors. Will you be there?

German Pavilion 2015; © Olaf Nicolai: Giro, 2015, Performance © Olaf Nicolai: Giro, 2015, Performance © Olaf Nicolai: Giro, 2015, Performance © Manuel Reinartz
German Pavilion 2015; © Olaf Nicolai: Giro, 2015, Performance © Olaf Nicolai: Giro, 2015, Performance © Olaf Nicolai: Giro, 2015, Performance © Manuel Reinartz

Ebner: A visit to the Biennale is simply mandatory. However, I do not know yet whether I will make it to the opening week. Every year, I look forward most to the country pavilions- to how the artists and curators adorn the same historical "vessels" and "scratch" at their history. It was an important decision to hold on to exploration, which allow us time and again to turn our attention to the space and to our individual history.

Issue 2: Nicolaus Schafhausen

Nicolaus Schafhausen, curator in 2007/2009 © Kunsthalle Wien 2014, photo: Sabine Hauswirth
Nicolaus Schafhausen, curator in 2007/2009 © Kunsthalle Wien 2014, photo: Sabine Hauswirth

Issue 4: Udo Kittelmann

Udo Kittelmann curated the German Pavilion in 2001 © Juliane Eirich
Udo Kittelmann curated the German Pavilion in 2001 © Juliane Eirich

Issue 3: Susanne Gaensheimer

Susanne Gaensheimer, director of the museum of Modern Art in Frankfurt/ Main. photo: Renato Ribeiro Alves
Susanne Gaensheimer, director of the museum of Modern Art in Frankfurt/ Main. photo: Renato Ribeiro Alves

Issue 5: Julian Heynen

Julian Heynen, curator in 2003 and 2005; photo: Jeanne Hofer
Julian Heynen, curator in 2003 and 2005; photo: Jeanne Hofer