A Biennale Invitation
Our Easter Interview
Artists and immersive theatre directors Anna Soderblom and Oscar Blustin moved to Venice in 2019. Their installation It’s Always Ourselves We Find In The Sea is showing during the Art Biennale at the Magazine Gallery at Palazzo Contarini Polignac. They managed to find time around installing the show to be this Easter’s interviewees and we’re thrilled to announce that readers of the Sugar Street Newsletter are exclusively invited to the vernissage for the show, which will take place from 18.00 on Friday 23rd April (please see below for details).
Someone arrives in Venice on a magic carpet and has only an hour to see the city. What should they do?
Stay on the magic carpet and do a fly-thorough of the city! That would be amazing! Imagine skimming along the canals, swooping under the bridges, soaring out over the lagoon…. Or, hop in a boat instead - the point being, experiencing Venice at street-level is magical and glorious, but seeing the city from a boat is something else again. Dawdling languidly down eerily echoing little waterways is truly the city at its finest.
What’s one piece of advice you would give to anyone planning on relocating to Venice?
Pack wellington boots, a sketchpad or notebook, and infinite amounts of patience. And don’t forget your sense of awe and wonder.
How has Venice inspired the installation you are showing at Biennale?
The idea was born out of our experiences during the acqua grande in November 2019, which devastated the city - the installation is an exploration of water, its life-giving properties and the threat it can pose, with a message of community and communality in the face of the challenges we are facing as a planet at its heart - all of which themes were brought into sharp relief by the flood. The installation couldn’t have been made anywhere else.
Do you have a favourite spot for drinks or dinner?
For dinner, Ai Mercanti (Corte Coppo, 4346/a), superb food, a stellar wine list and the most skilled and charming proprietors in town; and for innovative, dangerously delicious cocktails - there’s a theme in the names here, clearly - Il Mercante (Fondamenta Frari, 2564). Both could hold their own against any establishment in any city in the world.
You have an exquisite flask of Murano glass in which you can bottle one Venetian memory. What would you choose?
The scent of first day of Proper Venetian Spring (which is a different thing to First Spring, Fake Spring, and It’s Freezing Again Spring) when the stones are starting to warm up, there’s the breath of the ocean on the Giudecca canal, and the wisteria is just coming into bloom.
for Sugar Street Supper Club subscribers
Vernissage Opening of It's Always Ourselves We Find in the Sea
Friday 23 April
RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s Always Ourselves We Find In The Sea is at the Magazzino Gallery of Palazzo Contarini Polignac, Calle Sella Rota, Dorsoduro 874
23 April - 14 May 2022
10.00 - 18.00 (except Tuesdays)
Chocolate and Almond Easter Biscuits
These have been adapted slightly from a recipe I was taught a few years ago. The reason they have stuck with me is not only because of the delicious biscuit it creates, but also the flexibility and freezeability. This means that you can quite literally shave off the biscuits you need. This is what we need going into weekends full of visitors.
100g soft brown sugar
150gr self-raising flour
good pinch of salt
2 small tbsp cocoa powder
250gr blanched almonds, roughly chopped (you can use peanuts, pistachios or anything like this)
1 pinch of chilli powder (very optional)
Preheat oven to 180c if you are going to be cooking straight away. Cream the butter and sugar together until smooth then add the dry ingredients, leaving the chopped nuts till last.
Pour the mixture onto a large sheet of cling film and roll it into a sausage shape, twisting the ends tightly. Chill in the fridge or freezer. When ready to cook unwrap the cling film and slice into discs. How thick you want them depends on who and when you are serving them I think. But just remember to adjust the cooking times.
1/2 cm thick should be cooked for 15 mins.
Let cool on a rack before serving.
In the freezer they will stay good for up to, 3 months.
Tip: It is a good idea if you want to cut your biscuits thinly to finley chop the nuts rather than roughly.