press release

ARS 11 exhibition in Kiasma, Helsinki will open 15 April. The ARS 11 exhibition investigates Africa in contemporary art. The exhibition features some 300 works by a total of 30 artists. The Kiasma Theatre also has a programme of ARS events and performances. In addition to artists living in Africa, the show also features others who live outside the continent, artists of African descent as well as Western artists who address African issues in their work.

The themes of the exhibition, such as migration, environmental problems and urban life are global, issues that affect us all. Memory, recollection and the simultaneous presence of different histories and layers of time are some of the common starting points of the work of many artists featured in the exhibition. At best ARS 11 can produce new understanding and also provide background information on the situation in today’s Africa. The exhibition will extend the idea of what Africa, contemporary art and African contemporary art are today.

ARS 11 is a major international art event filling Kiasma with artworks, performances, screenings, discussions and workshops. The ARS 11 curator team are Pirkko Siitari, Director of Kiasma, Arja Miller, Chief Curator, and Jari-Pekka Vanhala, Curator. The ARS 11 programme for Kiasma Theatre will be compiled by Riitta Aarniokoski. The themes of the exhibition and the artists are presented in richly illustrated exhibition catalogue.

The artists of exhibition are Georges Adéagbo, b. 1942 Benin, lives and works in Cotonou; Ardmore Ceramic, ArtKwaZulu-Natal, South-Africa; Sammy Baloji, b. 1978, Democratic Republic of Congo, lives and works in Lubumbashi ; Ursula Biemann, b. 1955 Switzerland, lives and works in Zürich¸ Baaba Jakeh Chande, b. 1971 Zambia, lives and works in Helsinki; Kudzanai Chiurai, b. 1981 Zimbabwe, lives and works in Johannesburg; Steven Cohen, b. 1962 South Africa, lives and works in Paris; El Anatsui, b. 1944 Ghana, lives and works in Nsukka, Nigeria; Samba Fall, b. 1977 Senegal, lives and works in Oslo; Rotimi Fani-Kayode, 1955 Nigeria - 1989 Great Britain; Samuel Fosso, b. 1962 Cameroon; Patrizia Guerresi Maïmouna, b. 1951 Italy, lives and works in Montefore d’Alpone and Milan; Ditte Haarløv Johnsen, b. 1977 Denmark, lives and works in Copenhagen; Romuald Hazoumè, b. 1962 Benin, lives and works in Porto Novo; Laura Horelli, b. 1976 Finland, lives and works in Berlin; Pieter Hugo, b. 1976 South Africa, lives and works in Cape Town; Alfredo Jaar, b. 1956 Chile; lives and works in New York; Michael MacGarry, b. 1978 South Africa, lives and works in Cape Town¸ Vincent Meessen, b. 1971 USA, lives and works in Brussels; Nandipha Mntambo, b. 1982 Swaziland, lives and works in Cape Town; Baudouin Mouanda, b. 1981 Republic of Congo, lives and works in Brazzaville; Otobong Nkanga, b. 1974 Nigeria, lives and works in Antwerpen; Odili Donald Odita, b. 1966 Nigeria, lives and works in Philadelphia; J.D. ’Okhai Ojeikere, b. 1930 Nigeria, lives and works in Lagos; Emeka Ogboh, b. 1982 Nigeria, lives and works in Lagos; Abraham Onoriode Oghobase, b. 1979 Nigeria, lives and works in Lagos; Andrew Putter, b. 1965 South Africa, lives and works in Cape Town; Elina Saloranta, b. 1968 Finland, lives and works in Helsinki; Mary Sibande, b. 1982 South Africa, lives and works in Johannesburg and Barthélémy Toguo, b. Cameroon, lives and works in Bandjou and Paris.

Moments of Beauty is a coproduction with CCA Lagos and an independently curated part of ARS 11 exhibition. Guest curators for the Moments of Beauty, an exhibition of photographic work by J.D. ’Okhai Ojeikere, are Bisi Silva and Aura Seikkula.

ARS 11 will be part of the programme of the Capital of Culture year 2011 in Turku. The contribution of Kiasma will include two video installations from its collections: Where is Where? (2008) by Eija-Liisa Ahtila and in June WESTERN UNION: Small Boats (2007) by Isaac Julien. This part of the ARS 11 exhibition is produced in cooperation with the Kiasma Foundation. ARS 11 will extend across Finland and also to Stockholm, Sweden. The satellite exhibitions will be curated and produced by the partner museums and will showcase the themes of ARS 11.

only in german

ARS 11
Kuratoren: Pirkko Siitari, Arja Miller, Jari-Pekka Vanhala, Riitta Aarniokoski, Berndt Arell

Künstler: Samba Fall, Laura Horelli, Georges Adéagbo, Alfredo Jaar, Otobong Nkanga, Nandipha Mntambo, Odili Donald Odita, Barthelemy Toguo, J.D. Okhai Ojeikere, Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Isaac Julien, Sammy Baloji, Ursula Biemann, Baaba Jakeh Chande, Kudzanai Chiurai, Steven Cohen, El Anatsui, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Samuel Fosso, Patrizia Guerresi Maimouna, Ditte Haarlov Johnsen, Romuald Hazoume, Michael MacGarry, Vincent Meessen, Baudouin Mouanda, Emeka Ogboh, Abraham Onoriode Oghobase, Andrew Putter, Elina Saloranta, Mary Sibande.