[artinfo] How to Make Biennials in Contemporary Times

e-flux info at mailer.e-flux.com
Wed Nov 5 18:12:51 CET 2014

World Biennial Forum No. 2
How to Make Biennials in Contemporary Times
November 26-30, 2014

São Paulo

Directed by Charles Esche, Galit Eilat, Nuria 
Enguita Mayo, Pablo Lafuente, Oren Sagiv, 
Benjamin Seroussi and Luiza Proença

Hosted by the 31st Bienal de São Paulo

Organized by Biennial Foundation, Fundação Bienal 
de São Paulo, ICCo - Instituto de Cultura 

Venue: Auditório Ibirapuera
Free admission: registration closes on November 
15. Register 

Initiated by Biennial Foundation

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. 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. 

Opening and keynote address
November 26

Public discussions / professional workshops
November 27 and 28

Visit to 31st Bienal de São Paulo with an 
introduction by the artistic directors
November 29

Visit to other venues in São Paulo
November 30

Guest of Honor: Ivo Mesquita

Speakers in the public discussions: Moacir dos 
Anjos, Ana Paula Cohen, Fabio Cypriano, Övül 
Durmusoglu, Reem Fadda, Marina Fokidis, Anthony 
Gardner, Martin Grossmann, Cayo Honorato, Anne 
Szefer Karlsen, Ana Gonçalves Magalhães, Ivo 
Mesquita, Manuela Moscoso, Fernando Oliva, Peter 
Osborne, Elvira Dyangani Ose, Lucy Steeds, and 
David Teh

Invited respondents to the workshops on biennial 
practice: Ute Meta Bauer, Koyo Kouoh, Azar 
Mahmoudian, Combiz Mousavi Aghdam, Patrick 
Mudekereza, Yvette Mutumba, Ugochukwu-Smooth C. 
Nzewi, Alya Sebti, and Suzana Sousa

Biennial Foundation
Lisa Mazza: 
<mailto:lm at biennialfoundation.org>lm at biennialfoundation.org 

ICCo - Instituto de Cultura Contemporânea
Julia Saleme: 
<mailto:wbf2 at icco.art.br>wbf2 at icco.art.br / 

Fundação Bienal de São Paulo

Press Agent: A4 Comunicação 
Bruno Palma
<mailto:brunopalma at a4com.com.br>brunopalma at a4com.com.br / T +55 (11) 3897 4122 

WBF No. 2 is presented by: Ministério da Cultura do Brasil, and Banco Itaú

Co-sponsor: CESP - Companhia de Energia de São Paulo

In partnership with Itamaraty - Ministério das 
Relações Exteriores do Brasil; Governo do Estado 
de São Paulo; Prefeitura de São Paulo; Secretaria 
de Cultura e Secretaria do Verde e Meio 
Ambiente; Auditório Ibirapuera; Itaú 
Cultural; ifa - Institute for Foreign Cultural 
Relations; Arts Council England; British Council; 
Consulate General of the Federal Republic of 
Germany in Sao Paulo; Goethe-Institut São Paulo; 
Prince Claus Fund; OCA - Office for Contemporary 
Art Norway; Embassy of Norway in Brazil; Turkish 
Consulate General in São Paulo; Turkish Airlines; 
IBA - International Biennial Association. 

Advisory Partner WBF No. 2: ifa - Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations

Media Partners: ARTE!Brasileiros; South as a State of Mind; frieze

More information about the Artinfo mailing list