Brian Eno to receive Venice Biennale’s Lifetime Achievement award

Brian Eno, the esteemed composer, producer and visual artist, will be the recipient of the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement award at the Venice Biennale this year.

Brian Eno

The legendary figure, who has worked prominently with the likes of U2, Talking Heads, and was a key member of Roxy Music, will be handed the award at a ceremony on 22 October.

In a statement, organisers for the prestigious annual event say the decision to award Eno was based on his “research into the quality, beauty and diffusion of digital sound and for his conception of the acoustic space as a compositional instrument.”

Eno has been a pioneering force in music with his contributions to ambient music and work across rock, pop and electronica.

Brian Eno

In 2019, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of Roxy Music, with whom he recorded two albums – the group’s self-titled 1972 debut and For Your Pleasure the following year – before departing in mid-1973.

As part of the announcement, composer Lucia Ronchetti also emphasised the reasoning for the Venice Biennale presenting the award, writing: “Brian Eno’s compositions have been conceived in terms of a generative process that evolves in a potentially infinite time dimension, foreshadowing many of today’s compositional trends linked to digital sound.”

As well as being presented with the lifetime achievement award, Eno will also be the subject of a new video art installation being displayed at the award, titled Nothing Can Ever Be The Same, which will premiere the same day he’s given the Golden Lion.

Last year, Eno released the album ForeverAndEverNoMore, which means his catalogue now consists of a remarkable 28 solo studio albums, 27 collaborative studio albums, 14 compilation albums, eight video albums, and nine singles.

Brian Eno young

Recently, too, and serendipitously, he’s also been credited as something of a mentor to in-demand producer, DJ and multi-instrumentalist Fred Again. (real name, Fred Gibson).

Eno used to be Gibson’s neighbour and invited the then- 16-year-old to his a-cappella groups, where the two would discuss synths and music.

After around two years of mentorship, Eno asked Gibson to co-produce his two 2014 collaboration albums with Underworld’s Karl Hyde, kickstarting Gibson’s entrance into music and production.

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