Post Biennale Depression Syndrome

Le Biennali Invisibili





Post Biennale Depression Syndrome

The Biennales until very recently used to be those marathons where everyone who participated:

Artists, curators, co-curators, artists’ assistants, assistants of the assistants, technicians, registers, organizers, advisors, architects, producers, designers, translators, tour guides, exhibition hall caretakers and all visitors ended up completely exhausted, worn out, wasted, absorbed, corroded, bent, with debt and depressed.

On the first days of the opening there is always a lot of enthusiasm, starting at the info point, checking the catalogue, getting a map, marking the points of interest, sign up for tours, follow directions, listen to recommendations, hydrate on the way, greeting the rest of the participants, cocktails, previews, openings, lectures, dinners and performances.

Go to bed late, get up early, accumulate contacts, business cards, postcards, flyers, tote bags, publications and keep on going with all the accumulated weight. As days go by, the first symptoms begin to appear, but enthusiasm will be stronger than tiredness and participants will go on with the euphoria of getting as far as possible.

Many participants cannot keep up with the rhythm of the Biennale and prefer to stay on the comfortable couches of the nearby bars. While many leave the marathon, others arrive fresh and rested, some speed up the pace of walking and others walk calmly, but no one will escape to the domino effect of a collective depression.

Post Biennale Depression Syndrome is difficult to cure, especially if many Biennales are attended, which can lead any participant to suicide. A critical moment of the depression is right after the Biennale ends, at that moment a fog darkens the mind, accompanied by a sentimental storm, diffuse memories, emotional paralysis, momentary sadness, loss of ego, lack of creativity, contradictory thoughts, confusion, social isolation, nausea, anger, aggression, pessimism, anxiety and foot cramps.

At the end of the Biennale the participants wish to be alone, to isolate themselves from the world in a dark room while demotivation devours them in silence. Not attending other events, turning off the phone and not answering emails for a long time, depressed participants will be tempted to open the Biennale’s catalogue and turn the pages slowly, bringing back memories that will only make the symptoms worse.

Very few participants manage to recover, some fall into hard drugs and others into alcoholism, some can recover over the years, but many will never come back to a Biennale, they will disappear forever.

Marco Montiel-Soto