TAIPEI BIENNIAL 2016
September 10, 2016 – February 5, 2017
Organized by Taipei Fine Arts Museum (TFAM)
Curated by Corinne Diserens
Gestures and Archives of the Present, Genealogies of the Future: A New Lexicon for the Biennial
With Dareen ABBAS, Lawrence ABU HAMDAN, Saâdane AFIF, John AKOMFRAH, Francis ALŸS, anarchive, Sven AUGUSTIJNEN & Hannah RYGGEN, CHANG Teng-Yuan, CHEN Chieh-jen, Eric CHEN & Rain WU, Fei-hao CHEN, I-Hsuen CHEN, CHIANG Kai-chun, Tiffany CHUNG, Tacita DEAN, Manon de BOER, Ângela FERREIRA, Peter FRIEDL, Valeska GERT, Kyungah HAM, James T. HONG, Chia-Wei HSU, Li-Hui HUANG, HUANG Mingchuan, Po-Chih HUANG, Yi-Chen HUNG, IM Heung-soon, siren eun young jung, Bahman KIAROSTAMI, KAO Jun-Honn, KUO Yu-Ping, Latifa LAÂBISSI & I-Fang LIN & Christophe WAVELET, I-Chern LAI, Yi-Chih LAI, LÊ Thị Kim Bạch, Xavier LE ROY, Hsu-Pin LEE, James Ming-Hsueh LEE, Pierre LEGUILLON, Minouk LIM, River LIN, LIN Yi-Wei, Chih-Hung LIU, Vincent MEESSEN, Christine MEISNER, Santu MOFOKENG, Jean-Luc MOULÈNE, Reinhard MUCHA, Pages Magazine, PARK Chan-Kyong, PEN Sereypagna & The Vann Molyvann Project, PEN Varlen, Jo RACTLIFFE, Ella RAIDEL, Yvonne RAINER, Shubigi RAO, Ad REINHARDT, Walid SADEK, Anri SALA, Alexander SCHELLOW, Shake, Nida SINNOKROT, Penny SIOPIS, SU Yu Hsien, Nasrin TABATABAI & Babak AFRASSIABI, TING Chaong-Wen & Yannick DAUBY, TRẦN Lương, TRƯƠNG Công Tùng, Po-Hao TSENG & Lecture of Ghost, Hong-Kai WANG, WANG Mo-Lin & Blacklist Studio & AU Sow-Yee, Christophe WAVELET, Witkacy, WU Chi-Yu & SHEN Sum-Sum & Musquiqui Chihying, Paola YACOUB, YEH Wei-Li & YEH Shih-Chiang.
With contributions from more than 80 artists, Taipei Fine Arts Museum and guest curator Corinne Diserens will present a rich, five-month long artistic program interweaving exhibitions, performances, screenings, symposiums, readings, conferences, and workshops in on-going collaborations with various cultural and educational Taiwanese institutions.
Gestures and Archives of the Present, Genealogies of the Future aims to explore the museum’s catalytic role in navigating between knowledge systems and in the experience of trans-artistic practices and research in societal configurations that take into consideration cultural paradigm shifts. Treating the biennial as a matrix, an organic whole with its various forms, intensities, rhythms, and traces, it engages “performing the archives, performing the architecture, performing the retrospective” and the invention of narrative apparatuses and reflexive images in relation to artistic productions and practices of thought with a firm grip on historical conditions and realities, which play along with or resist realities to come, or whose advent is impossible.
With works that aim to keep alive the collective, imaginary memory of potentially yet to be revealed images, the biennial proposes to unravel relations to archiving or anti-archival gestures and modes of memorization in an effort to shed light on their readings/usage and potential appropriations, considering that their geneses are closely bound to a “critical intimacy” between the artwork and the spectator/visitor. Doing so, it aims to contribute to a coherent critique of institutional bureaucracy so that radical thought does not lose its vital center and ability to disarm configurations of power, thereby unlocking human imagination out of dead zones to explore heterogeneous narratives and allow common memory to disseminate and settle.
The biennial’s program offers a space embracing artistic experimentations and debates with various publics, reconfiguring the logic of what is shared, a site for public staging in relation to an idea of art as well as to evolving acts and forms seeking emancipation from the dominant narratives that rule social life.
With the production, co-production, and presentation of a large number of new artworks, films and performances from Taiwanese, Southeast/East Asian, and international artists, the biennial has become a major actor in supporting contemporary art in Taiwan. Exploring historical coincidences and resonances, some invited artists are also proposing evocations and presentations, with visual, performative, or discursive configurations, that engage with seminal artistic gestures and the corpuses of major artists of the last century that have nourished their own practices, including John Cage, Lygia Clark, Marcel Duchamp, Valeska Gert, Le Corbusier, Hannah Ryggen, Yvonne Rainer, Ad Reinhardt, Witkacy, and Yeh Shih-Chiang, among others.
The exhibition Gestures and Archives of the Present, Genealogies of the Future at Taipei Fine Arts Museum accompanied by a program of film screenings in the biennial’s “little cinema,” and the artist-in-residence project at Taipei Artist Village will open to the public on September 10, 2016. A number of other installations, by artists such as Nida Sinnokrot, Tiffany Chung, and Christine Meisner, will be deployed in November, December, and January.
Starting on December 9, for a period of four weeks, the museum will host “Retrospective,” an exhibition within the biennial’s exhibition conceived by Xavier Le Roy as a choreography of actions by 15 Taiwanese performers in situations that investigate various experiences of the present as a composition of several times coexisting in the same time and space. “Retrospective” engages with excerpts from Le Roy’s solo works and biographical elements from each performer as well as the intersecting apparatuses of the theater and the museum.
Throughout the Taipei Biennial, workshops are being organized with cultural and educational partners, and a rich program of performances will take place at the Taipei Fine Arts Museum and other venues, including specially commissioned pieces for the biennial, demonstrating the collective capacity of artists to invent paths allowing trans-disciplinary experimentation.
The Taipei Biennial Symposium, divided into three parts, will be held September 10 – 11, November 26 – 27, 2016, and January 13 – 15, 2017. It aims to bring together a large public with artists, theorists, and researchers around lectures, presentations, discussions, screenings, musical events, and performances. Philosophers, historians, anthropologists, artists, writers, choreographers, filmmakers, and musicians will present their works, and share their research and ongoing projects. History and theory will not be regarded as entities separate from art practices but, on the contrary, as necessary and inherent to any relevant project in today’s artistic context. The symposium will draw from heterogeneous resources, exploring pedagogical prototypes, models, and formats.
The series of monthly conferences Kau-Puê × Photography Forum: Taipei Biennial 2016 Project (September 17, October 22, November 19, December 17, 2016, 2 – 5 pm), organized with art historian Jow-Jiun Gong, focuses, as part of an ongoing research project, on exploring images of religious folk festivals in the history of Taiwanese photography. Photographers, researchers, critics, and editors will be invited to reflect in a series of talks on Taoist-Buddhist religious folk images archiving performances and to examine them from alternative perspectives at variance with the stereotypical emphasis on individual photographers or the paradigm of modern western photography. With presentations by photographers Chang Chao-Tang, Albert Huang, Po-I Chen, Chao-Liang Shen, Bo-Liang Lin, Yun-Ping Chien, in conversation with Jow-Jiun Gong, Jui-Chung Yao, Chia-Chi Chen, Li-Hsin Kuo, Shih-Lun Chang, and Huang Yongsong.
The Editorial is a critical editorial platform organized in collaboration with Asia Art Archive in Hong Kong and Vernacular Institute. It will take place at the museum December 10 – 11, 2016. With a rich program of talks, readings, discussions, workshops, book launches, and publishing material, it considers the role and expanding network of independent art publishers in Asia, their local and international impact, and how hybrid publishing practices and ways of articulating and diffusing content, from artist books to the shifting roles of art libraries and their related archives, have been reshaped as sites of production, exhibition, reception, and transmission.
About the Taipei Biennial 2016
Held every two years to promote contemporary art within a global perspective, Taipei Biennial is one of the most pivotal international exhibitions organized by TFAM. As one of Asia’s longest running biennials, Taiwan’s contemporary art has experienced rapid growth and increasing internationalization in the last two decades with the biennial trend gaining traction worldwide. Widespread observation and critique of post-colonial positionality has been the focal point of various sectors of regional and international art scenes.
Taipei Biennial 2016 marks the tenth in the series since the Biennial began in 1998, bearing witness to nearly 20 years of transmutation and narrative transformation in a global and geo-cultural context. Taipei Biennial 2016 aims to construct a uniquely pan-Asian and Taiwan-specific vision to promote exchanges in local and international art fields, in the hope of developing the unique, transforming, and fluctuating role of the Taipei Biennial in the midst of a global deluge of biennials. www.taipeibiennial.org
About Taipei Fine Arts Museum
Founded in 1983, Taipei Fine Arts Museum (TFAM) is Taiwan’s first museum of modern and contemporary art, and among one of the oldest in Asia. Venturing into its 33rd year, TFAM has dedicated itself to the development of modern art in Taiwan while staying abreast of ongoing proposals in contemporary arts. It has pioneered the biennial trends for the region and overseen the operations of the Taipei Biennial since 1998 and the planning for the Taiwan Pavilion as a collateral event of Venice Biennale since 1995.
Over the past decades, TFAM has not only served as a platform to showcase exceptional works from both domestic and foreign artists, but also long become an incubator to engage in-depth exchanges between the Taiwanese and international art ecology. In the recent years, major retrospective of internationally renowned artists from Asia and chronological exhibitions of TFAM collection were held, these include View–Point: A Retrospective Exhibition of Li Yuan-chia, and Formosa in Formation: Selected works from the Taipei Fine Arts Museum Collection in 2015, among others. Meanwhile, TFAM also hosts an annual competition award Taipei Arts Award, which is influential in shaping the emerging art scene in Taiwan and has become a pivotal platform that incubates excellent local talents since 1996. www.tfam.museum