Reviews Art

Hospital at the Venice Biennale

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: (Published 30 June 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:54
  1. Colin Martin (, independent consultant in healthcare communication
  1. London

    The Venice Biennale is a cultural Olympiad, where nations field their pre-eminent contemporary artists for judgment. Many countries have permanent pavilions in the city's public gardens. George Hadjimichalis has transformed Greece's terracotta brick pavilion into a hospital. The flags of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent fly above it, adding a timely political dimension by reminding us that the Geneva Conventions protect all hospitals.

    “The hospital is a paradoxical space; it is within society and plays a very important in it, yet at the same time it is outside it,” says Hadjimichalis. “People change identity once they are admitted as patients or when they enter it as relatives or friends. As a space it is self referential rather than related with the outside world, so it is a closed circuit.” His four part, multimedia installation is …

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