press release

Liverpool Biennial 2020
"The Stomach and the Port"
11.07.2020 - 25.10.2020

Liverpool Biennial is the UK biennial of contemporary art. Taking place every two years across the city in public spaces, galleries, museums and online, the Biennial commissions international artists to make and present work in the context of Liverpool.

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Titled The Stomach and the Port, the 11th edition explores notions of the body. Drawing on non-Western ways of thinking, Liverpool Biennial 2020 challenges an understanding of the individual as a defined, self-sufficient entity. The body is instead seen as a fluid organism that is continuously shaped by and shaping its environment. A plethora of artistic practices inform this edition: many of the artworks include sound, shun direct representation, de-stabilise gender categories or look at intense forms of contact.

The Stomach and the Port develops through three entry points—stomach, porosity and kin. The stomach is viewed as a primary organ engaging with the world. Porosity is embraced as a way of responding to borders or the strict contours of the skin. The notion of kin is revisited as a social tissue that prepares us for abundant futures. Liverpool, and its maritime history as a point of global contact and circulation, provides the perfect ecosystem to situate these enquiries.

More than 50 international artists have been invited to respond to the theme within the context of the city:
Larry Achiampong, Erick Beltrán, Diego Bianchi, Alice Channer, Judy Chicago, Ithell Colquhuon, Christopher Cozier, Yael Davids, Ines Doujak & John Barker, Dr. Lakra, Jadé Fadojutimi, Jes Fan, Lamin Fofana, Ebony G. Patterson, Sonia Gomes, Ane Graff, Ayesha Hameed, Camille Henrot, Nicholas Hlobo, Laura Huertas Millán, Sohrab Hura, Evan Ifekoya, Invernomuto & Jim C. Nedd, Rashid Johnson, KeKeÇa, Jutta Koether, Last Yearz Interesting Negro, Ligia Lewis, Linder, Luo Jr‐shin, Jorge Menna Barreto, Haroon Mirza, Neo Muyanga, Pedro Neves Marques, Roland Persson, Anu Põder, Reto Pulfer, André Romão, Kathleen Ryan, Zineb Sedira, Xaviera Simmons, Teresa Solar, Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, Jenna Sutela, UBERMORGEN & Leonardo Impett, Luisa Ungar, Alberta Whittle, Zheng Bo, David Zink Yi

The artists in this edition share concerns with the definition, invention and circulation of bodies and their knowledges. They engage with histories of contamination and gather together ways of understanding our bodies as zones capable of expansion: where agency can be distributed amongst beings, ideas of representation are substituted by forms of embodiment, and concepts of kinship extend beyond everyday human experience towards a more inclusive society.

The Biennial programme will be presented in locations across Liverpool, including public and unexpected spaces, historic sites and the city’s leading art venues: Bluecoat, FACT, Open Eye Gallery, Tate Liverpool and Victoria Gallery & Museum. New for 2020, Liverpool Biennial’s reach will also expand to the city’s historic Fabric District. A dynamic programme of free exhibitions, performances, screenings and fringe events will unfold over the 15 weeks, shining a light on the city’s vibrant cultural scene.

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Liverpool Biennial is delighted to announce the appointment of Manuela Moscoso as Curator for Liverpool Biennial 2020, which will take place 11 July – 25 October 2020.

Moscoso, who will co-curate the 11th edition with the Liverpool Biennial team, said: "I am thrilled to be moving to Liverpool to start working with the talented team on the next edition of the Biennial. It is a challenge and a great new context in which to set my mind, and my heart, at play."

Sally Tallant, Director of Liverpool Biennial, said: “We are delighted that Manuela Moscoso will be joining us for 2020 and bringing her expertise to the team. I look forward to welcoming Manuela to the city and working with her together with our partners in Liverpool.”

Manuela Moscoso, originally from Ecuador, is currently the Senior Curator at Tamayo Museo, Mexico City. She is part of Zarigüeya, a programme that activates relations between contemporary art and the pre-Columbian collection of the Museo de Arte Precolombino Casa del Alabado, Ecuador. Moscoso was the adjunct curator at the 12th Cuenca Biennial and the co-curator of the Queens International 2011 Biennial. In 2012 she was appointed co-director of Capacete, a residency programme based in Brazil where she also co-ran the curatorial programme, Typewriter. Moscoso has collaborated with CA2M, Di Tella, MAM Medellin, Museo de Rio, RedCat, Fundació Miró among other institutions. Her work and research focuses on artistic production that can articulate critical present endeavours, interrogating a linear history and univocal perspectives. Moscoso has a master’s degree from the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Saint Martin’s School of Art and Design, London.