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Liverpool Biennial 2018
'Beautiful world, where are you?'
July 14–October 28, 2018
Various locations in Liverpool
Marking 20 years of presenting international art in the city and region, the 10th edition of Liverpool Biennial, Beautiful world, where are you? invites artists and audiences to reflect on a world in social, political and economic turmoil.
The title derives from a 1788 poem by the German poet Friedrich Schiller, set to music by Austrian composer Franz Schubert in 1819. The years between the composition of Schiller’s poem and Schubert’s song saw great upheaval and profound change in Europe, from the French Revolution to the fall of the Napoleonic Empire. Today, the poem continues to reflect a world gripped by deep uncertainty. It can be seen as a lament but also as an invitation to reconsider our past, advancing a new sense of beauty that can be shared in a more equitable way.
Over 40 artists from 22 countries will present work that responds to the call Beautiful world, where are you? The city of Liverpool provides the setting with its public spaces, galleries, museums and civic buildings. As an additional strand, Worlds within worlds invites audiences to explore the rich histories and stories evoked by objects and artefacts from the city’s civic collections and architecture.
The participating artists are: Madiha Aijaz; Abbas Akhavan; Morehshin Allahyari; Francis Alÿs; Ei Arakawa; Kevin Beasley; Mohamed Bourouissa; Banu Cennetoğlu; Shannon Ebner; Paul Elliman; Inci Eviner; Aslan Gaisumov; Ryan Gander with Jamie Clark, Phoebe Edwards, Tianna Mehta, Maisie Williams and Joshua Yates; Joseph Grigely; Dale Harding; Holly Hendry; Lamia Joreige; Brian Jungen; Janice Kerbel; Duane Linklater; Mae-ling Lokko; Taus Makhacheva; Ari Benjamin Meyers; Naeem Mohaiemen; Paulina Olowska; George Osodi; Silke Otto-Knapp; Mathias Poledna; Annie Pootoogook; Reetu Sattar; Suki Seokyeong Kang; Iacopo Seri; Melanie Smith; The Serving Library; Agnès Varda; Joyce Wieland; Haegue Yang; Chou Yu-Cheng; Rehana Zaman.
Beautiful world, where are you? is presented in locations across Liverpool including public spaces and the city’s leading art venues and civic buildings: Bluecoat, FACT, Open Eye Gallery, Tate Liverpool, Liverpool John Moores University’s Exhibition Research Lab, RIBA North, the Playhouse theatre, the Oratory, St George’s Hall, Victoria Gallery & Museum (University of Liverpool) and Blackburne House. Public spaces include Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral and Exchange Flags in Liverpool’s Commercial District.
The public programme for Liverpool Biennial 2018 includes a series of talks by a wide-ranging list of participants—economists, sociologists, media theorists, architects and painters—presented by The Serving Library; a film programme combining a selection of Agnès Varda’s filmography with films curated by Varda, presented in partnership with FACT, Picturehouse and the BFI; as well as an education programme including commissions, family events, school workshops and free learning resources for primary and secondary schools. The accompanying publication will present a range of different voices in response to the leading question of the Biennial, Beautiful world, where are you?
Liverpool Biennial 2018 is curated by Kitty Scott (Carol and Morton Rapp Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art at the Art Gallery of Ontario) and Sally Tallant (Director, Liverpool Biennial) with the Liverpool Biennial team.
Also showing as part of Liverpool Biennial 2018 are partner exhibitions John Moores Painting Prize at the Walker Art Gallery, Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2018 at Liverpool John Moores University’s School of Art and Design, and the Biennial fringe. The Biennial is part of Liverpool 2018, a year-long programme that proudly showcases the city's culture and creativity a decade on from its year as European Capital of Culture.