Image: © Sofia Colucci / Fundação Bienal de São Paulo
Please join us for live coverage of the World Biennial Forum No. 2, How to Make Biennials in Contemporary Times, hosted by 31st Bienal de São Paulo. Coverage will be provided by Jonatan Habib Engqvist and Vinicius Spricigo, and run for the duration of the conference, November 26 – 30, 2014.
The World Biennial Forum No. 2 is directed by Charles Esche, Galit Eilat, Nuria Enguita Mayo, Pablo Lafuente, Oren Sagiv, Benjamin Seroussi and Luiza Proença and organized by Biennial Foundation, Fundação Bienal de São Paulo, ICCo - Instituto de Cultura Contemporânea.
Here’s a little bit about the forum:
Taking the idea of the ‘Global South’ as a starting point, a term we understand as one that is still in the process of definition, the World Biennial Forum No. 2 will look at how this geography shapes the current condition of world biennials. What pitfalls and possibilities might southern biennials present for biennial cultures in (sometimes desperate) need of renovation? What happens to the form of the biennial when biennials become part of a world system of art institutions subject to a global temporality? Can a biennial occur as the expression of a common will, or as a desire for the formation of a public sphere? Who are biennials organized for? And does love have anything to do with it? These are some of the questions the World Biennial Forum No. 2 will pose.
This year’s Forum includes the voices of curators and researchers who are looking at the changes within the landscape and ecology of the biennial at the present time. It will open with Peter Osborne’s evening keynote speech, Contemporaneity and the Biennial. Over the following two days, four public discussions will look at the history and the current practice of organizing biennials within the ‘Global South’. Speakers and papers will focus on perennial events across the globe, from Ecuador, Greece and Turkey, to Benin, Brazil, Indonesia and Senegal.
The first day’s sessions will focus on how biennial histories are accounted for and preserved. Once Again, as If for the First Time will look at biennial institutions as a whole, discussing how they both reproduce themselves and radically change over time. Works and Their Changing Places will discuss particular artworks and their appearance in different biennial contexts. The second day will look broadly at the question of how a public is constructed through biennials, while considering the different criteria for what a public is. To this end, No More Imagined Communities will focus on the emergence of new biennials in the ‘Global South’, while Popularity without Populism will look at specific public and educational ambitions.
On both days of the World Biennial Forum No.2, Workshops on Biennial Practice will take place, moderated by the artistic directors and each including the participation of some twenty professionals. In these workshops, practitioners engaged with biennial politics will discuss issues closely related to the World Biennial Forum No. 2’s wider aims: to question and provoke the concept of the biennial while attempting to construct new exhibition (hi)stories. The overall intention is to stimulate new thought on what the potential of the biennial is in contemporary times.
To check out the full press release, click here.