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Istanbul Biennial opens in September 2019

Istanbul Biennial 2019

The 16th Istanbul Biennial, organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, and sponsored by Koç Holding, will take place from 14 September to 10 November 2019.

The 2019 Istanbul Biennial will be curated by the French art historian, curator, and scholar, Nicolas Bourriaud, and is entitled The Seventh Continent.

One of the most visible effects of this new geological era, characterized by the impact of human activities on the planet is the so-called Seventh Continent. A third of the size of the United States but completely uninhabited, it was discovered in the North Pacific in 1997 by the American oceanographer Charles Moore, a vortex in the sea covering an area of 3.4 million square kilometers contaminated by 7 tons of floating plastic waste.

Nicolas Bourriaud, one of the co-founders of Palais de Tokyo, Paris, and current director of the Montpellier Contemporain, said: “The 16th Istanbul Biennial will highlight today’s art as an inquiry about global life, a sum of studies about human effects upon the earth. Due to the increasing interconnections between cultures, the development of transportation, the migratory flow, the old centers now shelter a multitude of micro-cultures. The natural elements drift away together, reduced to particles and waste.”

The Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV) has organized the Istanbul Biennial since 1987. The biennial aims to create a meeting point in Istanbul, in the field of visual arts between artists from diverse cultures and the audience. The Istanbul Biennial is one of the most established and respected biennials in the world. Each year a guest curator is appointed by an international advisory board to develop the conceptual framework and select the artists and projects that are invited to participate.

Nicolas Bourriaud, born in 1965, is a curator and writer. He is the director of Montpellier Contemporain (MoCo), an institution he created, gathering the La Panacée art center, the École Supérieure des Beaux-Arts and the future MoCo Museum, which will be opened in June 2019. He was the director of the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris from 2011 to 2015. From 2010 to 2011, he headed the studies department at the Ministry of Culture in France. He was Gulbenkian Curator for Contemporary Art at Tate Britain in London from 2007 to 2010 and founder advisor for the Victor Pinchuk Foundation in Kiev. He also founded and co-directed the Palais de Tokyo, Paris, between 1999 and 2006.

The 2019 Istanbul Biennial Advisory Board members are Iwona Blazwick, Director, Whitechapel Gallery, London; Ayşe Erek, Director of Design Research Graduate Programme, Kadir Has University, Istanbul; Yuko Hasegawa, Chief Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo and Agustín Pérez Rubio, independent curator, former Artistic Director of Museo de Art Latinoamericano, Buenos Aires.



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