Thu, 02. February 2020 Sesc 24 de Maio Sao Paulo

21st Contemporary Art Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil – Imagined Communities

George Drivas: Laboratory of Dilemmas, 2018; Photo courtesy of a4eholofote
Mohau-Modisakeng: Inzilo; Photo courtesy of a4eholofote
Dana-Awartani: I went away and forgot you. A while ago I remembered. I remembered I’d forgotten you. I was dreaming, 2017; Photo courtesy of a4eholofote
Claudia Martinez Garay: will outlive you still; Photo courtesy of a4eholofote
Erin Coates: Driving to the Ends of the Earth, 2016; Photo courtesy of a4eholofote
Teresa Margolles: Tela Bordada, 2019; Photo courtesy of a4eholofote

The event brings together artists from 28 countries and will occupy Sesc 24 de Maio for the first time.

The presence of nationalism as a means to understanding the disputes that mark our time. That is the background of the 21st Contemporary Art Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil Imagined Communities, which will run through February 2, 2020, at Sesc 24 de Maio, in São Paulo, comprising over 60 works of art and two collections, 55 artists from 28 countries, among video, painting, photography and installation. The artistic director Solange Farkas, the trio of curators Gabriel Bogossian, Luisa Duarte and Miguel A. López and the members of the selection jury Alejandra Hernández Muñoz, Juliana Gontijo and Raphael Fonseca analyzed together 2,280 submissions from 105 nationalities to select works from Brazil, Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Oceania.

The 21st Contemporary Art Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil. Imagined Communities borrows the title from Benedict Anderson’s classic study to reflect on forms of social and community organization existing beyond, on the fringes or in the breaches of nation states: religious or mystical communities, refugee groups uprooted from their original land, clandestine, fictional and utopian communities or those constituted in the underground worlds of bodily and sexual experiences. That is the horizon featured in the works by artists from indigenous groups or original peoples from Brazil, the United States, Canada, Mexico, Peru and New Zealand that deal with the issues present in the making and representation of those cultures in art and the world (works by Alberto Guarani, Jim Denomie, Alto Amazonas Audiovisual, Claudia Martínez Garay and others), in works that address the queer/LGBT universe (Aykan Safoglu, Megan- Leigh Heilig, Nilbar Güre?, #VoteLGBT, Paulo Mendel & Vitor Grunvald), racial issues (Emode Medeiros, Nelson Makengo, Thierry Oussou, Jonathas de Andrade), border conflicts. To these and so many works are added projects by five guest artists- Andrea Tonacci, Hrair Sarkissian, Teresa Margolles, Rosana Paulino and Thierry Oussou.

The Biennial is divided into three platforms: exhibition, public programs and publications. Exhibition Works by 50 selected and five guest artists are distributed on the ground, third, fifth and sixth floors. Throughout the display of 60 works and two collections, visitors will come across an unprecedented video installation by Rosana Paulino, flags made by Mônica Nador and the collective JAMAC, a collection of African jewelry acquired by MAE- USP in the 1970s and never shown in public, a memorial totem developed by the New Zealand artist Brett Graham, an Islamic mosaic installation made of sand that will be swept away at the opening of the exhibition by the Saudi artist Dana Awartani, visitors will be able to take part of and activate the work RESISTA by the collective Chameckilerner, actions with the audience planned by the collective #VOTELGBT, works by original and indigenous peoples, such as that by Alberto Guarani, as well as videos, photographs, paintings and installations in different formats capable of bringing visitors into intimate and immersive contact with the theme of the Biennial. A program of performances, debates, film screenings and public actions runs through the three months of the exhibition.


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21st Contemporary Art Biennial Sesc_Videobrasil Imagined Communities

through February 2, 2020 Sesc 24 de Maio, São Paulo

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