Floating Cinema – Unknown Waters

The surreal, dreamlike and hallucinatory visions, the absurd.
ChiaraBecattini_Cinema Galleggiante

@Chiara Becattini, 2021

My favourite event is returning to Venice for the third time and I am really excited ! The first edition in 2020 blew my mind. Remember when we were still on and off lockdowns, wearing masks, doing COVID tests to cross borders ... September was a pause during which normal life could be experienced again and for me it was a stimulating period. I was finally back in Venice - that I had to leave in February the day it was closed because of the pandemic - and curating the show Unbreakable Women in Glass at Fondazione Berengo in Venice. It felt like the city was welcoming me with open harms - eventually the show would win the price of the best exhibition during The Venice Glass Week - and this end of the summer in the lagoon waters was one of the best period of my life, full of the excitement of discovering Venice through the lenses of someone wanting to move there. Cinema Gallegiante is forever connected to this time.

Chiara_Becattini_Floating Cinema 2020@Chiara Becattini, 2020

I have always been a fan of outdoor cinema. In Paris all the teenagers would go to Parc de la Villette to enjoy the spectacle of old classics or recent blockbusters. Flirting was very much part of the overall experience. In my Italian summer I have the best memories of these itinerant cinemas, set up usually on a beautiful piazza with some remarkable church in the background or on a beach.

But lying on a boat to watch a highly curated program with the Venetian lagoon as a stage. That was a unique and grounding experience.

Cinema Gallegiante, venice 2021@Riccardo Banfi, 2021

The masterminds behind it are Eduardo Aruta and Paolo Rosso. I met Paolo when he was still trying to make the first Floating Cinema a reality and I was amazed by his vision and the number of innovative projects he is involved with from the Venetian Lagoon - for instance with the Greenhouse next to the Giardini - to his project with Redhero in Mongolia. Paolo is one of these talents that embodies the potential that Venice holds as a creative Center.
Ahead of the new event I have asked Paolo a few questions :

Nadja Romain : What was the impulse to create the Floating Cinema?

Paolo Rosso : Everyone has the wish to use the space of the lagoon to gather in the waters. It's a common idea for citizens and tourists alike. But from this common idea we wanted to invent an extraordinary experience.

Nadja : What have been your main challenges ?

Paolo : We were trying since 2018 to get the permission from the City Council. The main challenge at the beginning was that nobody wanted to support. We got lucky because of the pandemic. It turned out to to be an opportunity for us. There were a lack of activities, so this idea of a drive in got accepted. Before it was considered to crazy to be done.

Nadja : What have been the response from Venetian and visitors ?

Paolo: In the middle of the lagoon with all the elements, water, sky, sunset it truly connects people with nature. It's a simple way to be in a mediation state. It shifts your perceptions, and put everyone in a different mindset.

Chiara_Becattini_Floating Cinema 2020@Chiara Becattini, 2020

Nadja : Where do you see The Floating Cinema going in the coming years ?

Paolo : I think in the same dynamic as a collective action we love to keep it very local. But in the same time it is an event with international collaborations. We have films and performers from all over the world and institutional support from the MoMa (the Museum of Modern Art) in New York, The Australia Council for the Arts, Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Pentagram Stiftung together with Venice based organisations like The Peggy Guggenheim Collection and the Palazzo Grassi. We love this mix of a Venetian reality and a global one. It makes sense in both ways. The dialogue between the different realities create a magic. In the same idea it's important to us to show emerging artists and established one simultaneously.

We are happy about the live music in connection with videos and films. It's something that will continue, a signature of the project. This gives the audience a feeling of immersion in the present moment. Live music in the middle of the water is beautiful and captivating.

 Photocredits_ Riccardo Banfi_Cinema Galleggiante 2021

Floating cinema, Venice 2021@Riccardo Banfi, 2021

The audience can access and watch the programming either from their own boats or from a platform designed to accommodate spectators without access to a boat.

You know where to find me !

Nadja Romain, August 20th 2022


Floating Cinema – Unknown Waters

How to get here
By feet:
From the Giudecca Palanca vaporetto stop, turn right, turn right and take the first street on the left, Calle lunga dell'Accademia dei Nobili, at the end of which (after around 250 meters) you will find the entrance to the Consorzio Venezia Sviluppo Ex "Cantieri Lucchese".
PLEASE NOTE: You are ferried to a floating platform via rowboats. Getting on and off the boats requires good physical mobility, if you have mobility problems please contact us in advance.

By boat: The Cinema Galleggiante is located in the shallow area adjacent to the Retro Giudecca Canal, close to the Rio de Sant'Eufemia canal. Arriving from Zattere, take the Rio de Sant'Eufemia canal, between, the eponymous church and Harry's Dolci. At the end of the canal, on the left, you will find the reception at the Consorzio Venezia Sviluppo Ex "Cantieri Lucchese".

Book your ticket for the
Floating Cinema at this link!


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