Therme Art Program

Therme Group Announces 2019 Support of the British Council at the 58th Venice Biennale

Therme Group is pleased to announce their support of the British Council for the 2019 British Pavilion at the 58th La Biennale di Venezia as part of their international art initiative, Therme Art.


Photo by John Riddy

“Our support of the British Pavilion and presence at the Venice Biennale highlights our engagement with cultural production and discourse. Cultural engagement is an integral element of who we are and what we do,” says Mikolaj Sekutowicz, Curator of Therme Art.

As part of the Venice Biennale, the British Pavilion will be open to the public from 11 May – 24 November 2019 and will feature a major exhibition of new works by Glasgow-based artist Cathy Wilkes, curated by Dr. Zoe Whitley, Senior Curator at the Hayward Gallery, London.

The appointment of Dr. Zoe Whitley marks the first time the British Council has selected a curator through an open-call submission process.

“The importance of staying connected with all of our audiences through original and stimulating artistic programming is more relevant than ever in these particular times. I am very much looking forward to seeing the exhibition in place,” says Emma Dexter, British Council Director of Visual Arts, Commissioner of the British Pavilion and Chair of the British Pavilion selection committee.

As a supporter of the British Pavilion at the Biennale, Therme Group will present a second edition of their panel discussion series, Therme Forum, in the Pavilion in autumn 2019. Distinguished panelists from the fields of art, design, architecture, science, and city planning will participate in discussions regarding how the creativity of artists can shape the cities of the future. Past editions of Therme Forum have been hosted at the 2018 British Pavilion and Design Miami/ and have featured prominent leaders of thought, such as Hans Ulrich Obrist, Virgil Abloh, Mollie Dent-Brocklehurst, Torkwase Dyson, Arthur Jafa, the Haas Brothers, Studio Drift, Studio Swine and Grace Wales Bonner, among others. The 2019 Therme Forum at the British Pavilion will be co-curated by representatives of the British Council.

“Our forthcoming investment in the British market and our ongoing relationship with the British Council are very meaningful to us, allowing us to play an important part in the most significant international presentation of contemporary art relating to British culture,” says Robert C. Hanea, Therme Group Founder and CEO.

The British Council is a valued member of Therme Group’s network of partner organisations that aims to extend Therme Art’s mission of supporting and contributing open dialogues on creating sustainable solutions for future cities through innovations in art and architecture.

The 2019 edition of the Venice Biennale, titled May you Live in Interesting Times, examines the precarious existence of contemporary life within our current political climate. The Biennale will highlight art’s social function and unique approaches to creating art. It will encompass diverse perspectives that aim to challenge our existing habits and ways of thinking, expanding our interpretations of objects, images, situations and the world around us. Here, art is approached as a means to connect with others and generate meaning.


About the British Council

“The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education, and civil society. Last year we reached over 75 million people directly and 758 million people overall including online, broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with––changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive 15 percent core funding grant from the UK government.”


About Zoé Whitley

Zoé Whitley is Senior Curator at the Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre, London. Prior to her role at the Hayward, she was Curator, International Art, at Tate Modern, where she co-curated the exhibition Soul of a Nation in 2017. Whitley has curated works by Jenny Holzer, Lubaina Himid and Isaac Julien, among others, and in 2013 conceived the exhibition The Shadows Took Shape in collaboration with the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York.