11th Gwangju Biennale 2016
The Eighth Climate (What Does Art Do?)
Ahmet Öğüt » Lawrence Abu Hamdan » Ruth Buchanan » Tania Pérez Córdova » Matias Faldbakken » Dora García » Guillermo Faivovich & Nicolás Goldberg » Natascha Sadr Haghighian » Ane Hjort Guttu » Jasmina Metwaly / Philip Rizk » Rhil Jewyo » Gunilla Klingberg » Ann Lislegaard » David Maljkovic » Nicholas Mangan » Otobong Nkanga » Christian Nyampeta » Trevor Paglen » Philippe Parreno » Katie Paterson » Pauline Boudry & Renate Lorenz » Amalia Pica » Agnieszka Polska » Walid Raad (The Atlas Group) » Raqs Media Collective » Lili Reynaud-Dewar » Mariana Silva » Hito Steyerl » The Otolith Group (Kodwo Eshun, Anjalika Sagar) » Anton Vidokle » Munem Wasif » Andrew Norman Wilson » Anicka Yi » Aimée Zito Lema »
Exhibition: 2 Sep – 6 Nov 2016
Wed 31 Aug
The Gwangju Biennale Foundation
111 Biennale-ro, Buk-gu
We are now living in times when everyone talks about and freely discusses cultural issues. That the Korean national government has defined ‘cultural promotion’ as one of the four basic national policies confirms that the whole country gives cultural matters priority over other issues. When we consider other basic policies such as ‘economic development,’ ‘citizens’ well-being’ and the ‘building of a foundation for peaceful unification,’ it is evident that they are all profoundly grounded on cultural agendas, too. Indeed, culture rules in the present day.
As Raymond Williams stated, there are several different definitions of culture. Regardless of the meaning of culture, however, art is always one of the major constituents of culture. Of the many different genres of the arts, fine art is regarded as one of the most basic components of the arts. As you all may know, the Gwangju Biennale is an international art exhibition, but, virtually, it is not limited to an art event exclusively. It exists and presents itself through the medium of art, while constantly creating exchanges amongst other, diverse realms such as politics, economy, society, culture and education, which constitute this world. From the onset, Gwangju Biennale has attempted to raise essential questions about visual arts and art in general, endeavoring to find clues about the arts from the queries, through which the Biennale hopes to contribute to the history of art. In addition, it tries to engage with the history of humanity by examining social issues, thereby taking responsibility in the history of human culture and civilization.
The Gwangju Biennale has now gained international reputation beyond the regional boundary of Asia. Last year, Artnet, one of the renowned US art media, selected the Gwangju Biennale as one of the top five biennials along with the Venice Biennale, Kassel Documenta, Whitney Biennial and Manifesta. Some may criticize the ranking of art exhibitions for being a non-cultural gesture. Nevertheless, it is helpful to gain an understanding of the current position of the Gwangju Biennale in the international sphere.
The tenth Gwangju Biennale held in 2014 celebrated the twentieth anniversary of the event. The Gwangju Biennale Foundation will continue to make considerate and meaningful exhibitions, persistently reflecting ourselves, without sitting still or becoming complacent due to the of previous achievements. For the eleventh Gwangju Biennale, which will be held in 2016, the Swedish artistic director Maria Lind questions why Gwangju is Gwangju and why the Gwangju Biennale is the Gwangju Biennale. We hope you will come to the Gwangju Biennale and enjoy the great festivity together. Thank you very much.