Apr 06 2017

Biennale of Sydney Announces First Set of Artists for 2018 Edition

by Katherine Volk

​(Left to right) Brook Andrew, Yasmin Smith, Hoy Cheong Wong, Koji Ryui, Mami Kataoka, Rika Noguchi and NS Harsha. Photo by Catherine McElhone. Courtesy Biennale of Sydney. 

On April 6, the Biennale of Sydney’s artistic director Mami Kataoka released the names of the first set of artists to participate in the 21st edition, taking place in 2018, which also celebrates the exhibition’s 45th anniversary. Last July, upon her appointment to the Biennale, Kataoka—who is the chief curator of the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo—told ArtAsiaPacific that she intends to give a voice to underrepresented artists and reference discourse created by the previous iterations of the Biennale of Sydney. Kataoka said she was “particularly interested in finding a way to have more engagement from different local communities of diverse cultures, knowing that there are increasing numbers of residents in Sydney and Australia along with tourists from the Asian region.”

Recently, in Hong Kong, during an art-packed week in March—when Art Basel Hong Kong and Art Central were drawing in art lovers from all over the world—Kataoka curated “Duddell’s X Biennale of Sydney. Abstraction of the World,” which presented a sneak peek of three prominent artists who will be featured in the Biennale: Thai abstract painter Mit Jai Inn, Australian aboriginal artist George Tjungurrayi and Berlin-based Korean sculptor and installation artist Haegue Yang.

BROOK ANDREW, Guardians of the Galaxy: the Motherhood Number, 2016, linen, acrylic, ink and foil, 250 × 300 × 5 cm. Courtesy the artist.
BROOK ANDREW, Guardians of the Galaxy: the Motherhood Number, 2016, linen, acrylic, ink and foil, 250 × 300 × 5 cm. Courtesy the artist.

The Biennale of Sydney is a 12-week event that will take place across various locations in Sydney and include 70 local and international artists who will present new commissions and recent works. This initial announcement presents a roster of artists representing an expansive geographical range from North America to Australia. The list of the first 21 names is as follows:

Eija-Liisa Ahtila

Ai Weiwei

Brook Andrew

Oliver Beer

Anya Gallaccio

Laurent Grasso

NS Harsha

Mit Jai Inn

Kate Newby

Noguchi Rika

Nguyen Trinh Thi

Ciara Phillips

Koji Ryui

Semiconductor (Ruth Jarman and Joe Gerhardt)

Yasmin Smith  

George Tjungurrayi

Nicole Wong

Wong Hoy Cheong

Yukinori Yanagi

Haegue Yang

Jun Yang

In July, the title of the Biennale, along with further details, will be announced.

Duddells X Biennale of Sydney. Abstraction of the World runs until July 10, 2017.

The 21st Biennale of Sydney will take place from March 16 to June 11, 2018.

Katherine Volk is assistant editor at ArtAsiaPacific. 

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