Angel Orensanz at the closing of the 4th Florence International Biennale with a dramatic intervention, after receiving a medal gold “Lorenzo il Magnifico” of the City of Florence.

The image of fire was a permanent symbol in Luis Buñuel’s movies, NazarinThe Exterminating AngelBelle de Jour just to name a few. And the fire is an intricate metaphor in the recent six month exhibition of Angel Orensanz in Venice, “Burning Universe”. To conclude his Florence biennale contribution, Angel Orensanz incorporated fire and clouds of smoke to his sculpture piece during a performance yesterday at 1:00 PM in front of the pavilion of the Biennale, the Fortezza da Basso.

Orensanz continues his strong presence in Northern Italy with a reinterpretation of his Buñuel’s by adding a powerful performance and conceptual piece to his 14 feet tall, steel piece. Buñuel: The exterminating Fire brings out the corrosive, ironic worldview of Luis Buñuel; and the art press in Venice just called Orensanz’s work “ironic, irreverent”. Both developed a good friendship in spite of their age gap. Brought from Calanda in Aragon (Northern Spain), the sculpture “Razor in the Eye, (Buñuel)” arrived first in Lido Venice for the 6th Open International Sculpture and Installation Exhibition during the 60th Venice Film Festival at the end of August. I has been visited by close to 45,000 people together with the Orensanz’s show at Palazzo Malipiero, titled “Burning Univers”. No other artist’s oeuvre received in Venice as much art reviews and press recognition.

Orensanz’s work in Florence was publicly recognized with a gold medal “Lorenzo il Magnifico” of the City of Florence. The jury that granted the awards was made of Barbara Ross, Veronica Birke, Pasquale Celona, David Rubin, Dore Ashton, Stefano Francolini. Teresa Ortega Coca Matty Roca and John Spike.

A video program, Buñuel; The Exterminating Fire, for Time Warner Cable TV in NY is being produced now by Michelle Spike, and a CD of the Florence/Buñuel presentation will be available in early February of 2004.