artists & participants

press release

A world of art arrives in Australia 15th Biennale of Sydney - 8 June to 27 August 2006

Over a quarter of a million people will experience the world in a different way when they attend Australia’s leading contemporary art event, the 2006 Biennale of Sydney. This year’s free exhibition and associated events features 85 of the world’s most dynamic and provocative artists from 44 countries. All eyes will be on Sydney as the Biennale claims the attention of people from all over the city and beyond when it opens in 16 venues from Circular Quay to Marrickville, Blacktown and Campbelltown.

One of the most challenging events of its kind, the Biennale of Sydney celebrates its 15th exhibition in 2006, making it one of the most established biennales in the world. This year’s event provides a chance to experience some of today’s most exciting artists, many of whom will show in Australia for the first time. Over 50 of the 85 participating artists will be coming to Sydney for the event and special programs will give Australians unique access to some of the most creative minds working today.

The 2006 exhibition curated by leading art historian and curator, Dr Charles Merewether, pushes new boundaries with a strong representation by artists from countries and regions that are rarely represented in major international festivals and biennales. The breadth of the exhibition sees groundbreaking artists come from cultures as diverse as Bosnia, Malaysia, Palestine, Japan, India, Canada, Lebanon, Singapore, Israel, Britain, Egypt, Latvia, China, Serbia & Montenegro, Bahrain, Russia, The Netherlands, Brazil, the United States, New Zealand and Kazakhstan.

Seven Australian artists will feature strongly in this international line-up, including indigenous artists Djambawa Marawili (Yilpara, NT) and Julie Gough (Townsville, QLD); Ruark Lewis (Sydney, NSW), Tom Nicholson (Melbourne, VIC), Rose Nolan (Melbourne, VIC), Imants Tillers (Cooma, NSW) and Savanhdary Vongpoothorn (Canberra, ACT).

Over 50% of the artworks shown in the Biennale will premiere in Sydney. Increased levels of private and public sector support has allowed the Biennale of Sydney to encourage artists to make new work and many of these new projects have been created in response to the exhibition framework Zones of Contact.

Artistic Director & Curator of the 15th Biennale of Sydney, Dr Charles Merewether has travelled the world, visiting over 40 countries in 18 months and meet more than 1,600 artists. “Zones of Contact is an exhibition about today. It deals with the issues of our time – the ideas and concerns that shape all our lives and our sense of the future” said Dr Merewether. “There is a general global movement that is reflected in Zones of Contact: the experience of having one’s homeland occupied or of living in another person’s culture and the sense of physical, psychological and cultural displacement that arises, along with the impact it has on the land, environment and sense of belonging. The exhibition also celebrates the positive interactions between people, where connections are made and familiarity, understanding and intimacy is made possible.”

Highlights of the exhibition include: Leading Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, architect of the Beijing Olympic Stadium will create an 8m layered map of the world (Art Gallery of New South Wales); prolific Chinese painter Liu Xiaodong, renowned for painting from life, will exhibit two new vibrant large scale paintings (Art Gallery of New South Wales); British artist Antony Gormley will create a massive installation of 180,000 terracotta figures, a human landscape that will transform the 140m long Pier 2/3 at Walsh Bay; Albanian-born, Italy based, Adrian Paci’s 5m high crystal chandelier powered by 10 generators will light up the Pier; an inspiring sand sculpture and new series of bark paintings by leading indigenous Australian artist Djambawa Marawili will be opened with a ceremony featuring 10 Yirrkala community members (Pier 2/3); Imants Tillers, one of Australia’s best known contemporary artists, will create a new epic painting referring to the Australian landscape and colonial history (Museum of Contemporary Art); a captivating installation by leading Japanese-born artist Tomoko Mukaiyama will be at the Sydney Opera House involving instrument, body and voice; Hayati Mokhtar & Dain-Iskandar Said will premiere a new film about the shifting perceptions of the landscape along the east coast of Malaysia (Museum of Contemporary Art); New York artists Julie Mehretu and Stephen Vitiello will create a new work involving painting shaped by the music of Vitiello (Museum of Contemporary Art); artists Mona Hatoum (Pier 2/3) and Emily Jacir (SCA Galleries) will both be creating evocative new works; a bullet-ridden shipping container by Serbian artist Milica Tomić will confront viewers at Hyde Park Barracks and provide a chilling reminder of how many people died in Bosnia and Afghanistan during the recent wars; Palestinian born, Israel based, Raeda Saadeh draws upon her experiences as a Palestinian woman in a performance at the Sydney Opera House; major Indian artist and filmmaker Amar Kanwar will present a 3 channel projection charting the recent history of India (Art Gallery of New South Wales); and Indonesian-born Netherlands based Fiona Tan will create a new work from family album photography collected from dozens of residents of Sydney’s suburbs (Art Gallery of New South Wales).

Paula Latos-Valier, Managing Director of the Biennale of Sydney, said, “Pier 2/3, a principal venue, provides a dramatic and historic interior that has inspired artists and the public alike since the Biennale of Sydney first transformed it 20 years ago in 1986. We are delighted to have this unique venue in this milestone exhibition to showcase some intriguing large-scale projects and one-off performances. This amazing venue, and the scale and breadth of this year’s Biennale, would not have been possible without the increased funding received through the Visual Arts and Craft Strategy, an initiative of the Australian, State and Territory Governments.”

An extensive Public Program will be offered free over the 12 weeks of the exhibition. Highlights include: free Artists’ Talks during the five days of opening week, featuring up to 50 artists; an exciting Film Program offered free at the Art Gallery of New South Wales; ‘Comfort Zones’ or information lounges at principal venues which will include visitor resources and feature interviews with artists; a series of three free Symposia presented in each month of the exhibition, featuring leading Australian and international speakers; one of the world’s leading curators, René Block, gives the keynote address at the Museum of Contemporary Art on Friday 9 June (ticketed event); internationally respected curator and museum director, David Elliott, will also give a free keynote address on Saturday 10 June at the Art Gallery of New South Wales; a Public Preview of the exhibition at the Art Gallery of New South Wales as part of art.afterhours on Wednesday 7 June as well as a selection of other art.afterhours events throughout the exhibition; a national program of Masterclasses will provide opportunities for students in regional centres and cities throughout Australia to work directly with some of the outstanding international artists participating in the Biennale; and the Interstate Program will introduce our international visitors - artists, curators and art historians - to the Australian arts community through discussions, gallery tours and visits to leading arts organisations, educational institutions and museums throughout Australia.

Luca Belgiorno-Nettis, Chairman of the Biennale of Sydney, said, "The 2006 Biennale of Sydney sets a new benchmark: Charles Merewether has brought together an astonishing range of artists whose works evoke, on the whole, a poignancy rarely encountered in art exhibitions. Moreover, in terms of logistics, it is manifest that an event of this scale and reach is only possible with the continuing support of our generous public and private sector partners, in Australia and overseas. We hope the wider public is as captivated as we are by what Charles has shown us so far."

Pressetext MEDIA RELEASE 21 March 2006


ARTIST NAME BORN GENDER GENRE OF BIRTH & WORKS WORK Hamra Abbas 1976 F Sculpture Kuwait Berlin, Germany No Ai Weiwei 1957 M Sculpture Beijing, China Beijing Yes Anas Al-Shaikh 1968 M Video / Sound Manama, Bahrain Manama No Navjot Altaf 1949 F Video Meerut, India Mumbai & No Kondagaon, India Ghada Amer 1963 F Painting Cairo, Egypt New York, USA Yes Mamma Andersson 1962 F Painting Luleå, Sweden Stockholm, Sweden No Alfredo Juan Aquilizan 1962 M Installation Ballesteros, Los Baños, Laguna, Yes Cagayan, Philippines Philippines Maria Isabel Gaudinez-Aquilizan 1965 F Manila, Philippines Fikret Atay 1976 M Video Batman, Turkey Paris, France No The Atlas Group / Walid Raad 1967 M Video / Chbanieh, Lebanon New York, USA Yes Photography / & Beirut, Lebanon Performance Miroslaw Balka 1958 M Sculpture Warsaw, Poland Warsaw No Rebecca Belmore 1960 F Installation / Upsala, Canada Vancouver, Canada Yes Photography Zarina Bhimji 1963 F Photography Mbarara, Uganda London, UK No Stella Brennan 1974 F Video Auckland, Auckland No Aotearoa New Zealand Elina Brotherus 1972 F Photography Helsinki, Finland Paris, France & No Helsinki Cao Fei 1978 F Installation / Guangzhou, China Guangzhou Yes Sculpture Chen Chieh-jen 1960 M Video Taoyuan, Taiwan Taipei, Taiwan Yes Olga Chernysheva 1962 F Video / Moscow, Russia Moscow No Photography José Damasceno 1968 M Sculpture Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Rio de Janeiro Yes Ca˘lin Dan 1955 M Video Arad, Romania Amsterdam, Yes & No Netherlands & Bucharest, Romania Tacita Dean 1965 F Film Canterbury, UK Berlin, Germany No Evelı¯na Deicˇmane 1978 F Photography Valmiera, Latvia Riga, Latvia Yes Sebastián Díaz Morales 1975 M Video Comodoro Rivadavia, Comodoro Rivadavia No Argentina & Amsterdam, Netherlands Biljana Djurdjevic´ 1973 F Painting Belgrade, Belgrade, Yes former Yugoslavia Serbia & Montenegro Meschac Gaba 1961 M Installation Cotonou, Benin Rotterdam, Yes Netherlands Ghazel 1966 F Poster Tehran, Iran Paris, France Yes Antony Gormley 1950 M Sculpture / London, UK London No Installation Julie Gough 1965 F Sculpture / Melbourne, Townsville, Yes Installation Australia Australia Brett Graham 1967 M Installation / Auckland, Auckland Yes Sculpture Aotearoa New Zealand Rachael Rakena 1969 F Wellington, Palmerston North, Aotearoa New Zealand Aotearoa New Zealand Shilpa Gupta 1976 F Interactive Mumbai, India Mumbai Yes Video Laurent Gutierrez + 1966 M Installation / Casablanca, Morocco Hong Kong Yes Valérie Portefaix 1969 F Photography Saint-Etienne, France Dmitry Gutov 1960 M Painting / Moscow, Russia Moscow Yes Installation Mona Hatoum 1952 F Sculpture / Palestinian, London, UK Yes & No Installation born Beirut, Lebanon & Berlin, Germany Diango Hernández 1970 M Installation Sancti Spiritus, Cuba Dusseldorf, Germany, Yes Trento, Italy & Havana, Cuba Emily Jacir 1970 F Installation Riyadh, Saudi Arabia Ramallah, Palestine Yes New York, USA Šejla Kameric´ 1976 F Poster / Video Sarajevo, Sarajevo, Yes & No former Yugoslavia Bosnia & Herzegovina Amar Kanwar 1964 M Film New Delhi, India New Delhi No Hassan Khan 1975 M Sound / Video / London, UK Cairo, Egypt No Installation Elena Kovylina 1971 F Performance Moscow, Russia Moscow Yes & No Berlin, Germany Zurich, Switzerland & Los Angeles, USA Ruark Lewis 1960 M Sculpture / Sydney, Australia Sydney Yes Installation Liu Xiaodong 1963 M Painting Liaoning, China Beijing, China Yes Sharon Lockhart 1964 F Film Norwood, USA Los Angeles, USA No Rafael Lozano-Hemmer 1967 M Installation / Mexico City, Mexico Montréal, Canada Yes Projection & Madrid, Spain Lu Qing 1964 F Scroll Shenyang, China Beijing, China No Djambawa Marawili Marepe 1970 M Installation / Santo Antonio Santo Antonio Yes Sculpture de Jesus, Brazil de Jesus Julie Mehretu and 1970 F Painting / Addis Ababa, Ethiopia New York Yes Stephen Vitiello 1964 M Sound New York, USA Richmond, USA & New York Almagul Menlibayeva 1969 F Performance / Almaty, Kazakhstan Almaty & Yes & No Video Berlin, Germany Hayati Mokhtar 1969 F Film Kuantan, Malaysia Kuala Lumpur, Yes & Dain-Iskandar Said 1957 M Kelantan, Malaysia Malaysia Daido Moriyama 1938 M Photography Ikeda City, Osaka, Japan Tokyo, Japan No Rabih Mroué 1967 M Performance Beirut, Lebanon Beirut No Tomoko Mukaiyama F Music / Wakayama, Amsterdam, Yes Performance / Japan Netherlands Installation Ujino Muneteru 1964 M Installation / Tokyo, Japan Tokyo Yes Sound / Performance Katrı¯na Neiburga 1978 F Video Riga, Latvia Riga No Tom Nicholson 1973 M Sculpture Melbourne, Melbourne Yes & No Australia Rose Nolan 1959 F Painting Melbourne, Australia Melbourne Yes Damián Ortega 1967 M Sculpture Mexico City, Mexico City Yes Mexico & Berlin, Germany Adrian Paci 1969 M Sculpture / Shkoder, Albania Milan, Italy Yes & No Video Milenko Prvacki 1951 M Painting Feradin, former Yugoslavia Singapore Yes Tawatchai Puntusawasdi 1971 M Sculpture Bangkok, Thailand Bangkok Yes Qin Yufen 1954 F Installation / Shandong, China Beijing, China Yes Sound & Berlin, Germany Raqs Media Collective: Jeebesh Bagchi 1965 M Installation / New Delhi, India New Delhi No Monica Narula 1969 F Video New Delhi, India New Delhi Shuddhabrata Sengupta 1968 M New Delhi, India New Delhi John Reynolds 1956 M Painting Auckland, Auckland Yes Aotearoa New Zealand Liisa Roberts 1969 F Photography Paris, Helsinki, Finland No France St Petersburg, Russia & New York, USA Liza Ryan 1965 F Photography Norfolk, USA Los Angeles, USA Yes Raeda Saadeh 1977 F Installation / Umm-al-fahem, Jerusalem, Yes Performance Palestine Israel Anri Sala 1974 M Video Tirana, Albania Berlin, Germany No Jayce Salloum 1958 M Video Kelowna, Canada Vancouver, Canada No Ruti Sela & 1974 F Video Jerusalem, Israel Tel Aviv, Israel No Maayan Amir 1978 F Hadera, Israel Tel Aviv, Israel Nurit Sharett 1963 F Video Tel Aviv, Israel Tel Aviv No Ranjani Shettar 1977 F Sculpture Bangalore, India Bangalore Yes Mladen Stilinovic´ 1947 M Installation / Belgrade, Zagreb, No Photography former Yugoslavia Croatia Alia Syed 1964 F Video Swansea, UK London, UK No Tabaimo 1975 F Animation Hyogo, Japan Tokyo & Kyoto, Japan No Kei Takemura 1975 F Painting / Tokyo, Japan Berlin, Germany Yes Sculpture Fiona Tan 1966 F Photography / Pekan Baru, Amsterdam, Yes Video Indonesia Netherlands Kai Syng Tan 1975 F Installation / Singapore Singapore Yes Video / Performance The Conch: 1963 F Performance Paremata, Wellington, No Directed by Nina Nawalowalo Aotearoa New Zealand Aotearoa New Zealand Imants Tillers 1950 M Painting Sydney, Australia Cooma, Australia Yes Milica Tomic 1960 F Video / Belgrade, Belgrade, Yes & No Installation former Yugoslavia Serbia & Montenegro Mürüvvet Türkyilmaz 1968 F Installation / Izmir, Turkey Istanbul, Turkey Yes Sculpture U Sunok 1958 F Installation Inchon, South Korea Seoul, South Korea Yes Lidwien van de Ven 1963 F Photography Hulst, Netherlands Rotterdam, No Netherlands Savanhdary Vongpoothorn 1971 F Painting Champasak, Laos Canberra, Australia Yes Yelena Vorobyeva & 1959 F Installation / Nebit-Dag, Almaty, Kazakhstan No Turkmenistan Viktor Vorobyev 1959 M Photography Pavlodar, Kazakhstan Akram Zaatari 1966 M Video / Saida, Lebanon Beirut, Lebanon Yes & No Photography


Art Gallery of New South Wales: 8 June—27 August 2006 Museum of Contemporary Art: 8 June—27 August 2006 Pier 2/3, Walsh Bay: 8 June—27 August 2006 Artspace: 8 June—27 August 2006 Gallery 4a at the Asia-Australia Arts Centre; 8 June—27 August 2006 Australian Centre for Photography: 8 June—26 August 2006 Blacktown Arts Centre: 8 June—22 July 2006 Campbelltown Arts Centre: 8 June—27 August 2006 Hyde Park Barracks: 8 June—27 August 2006 Ivan Dougherty Gallery, College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales: 8 June—15 July 2006 Museum of Sydney: 8 June—27 August 2006 National Art School: Chapel: 8 June – 22 August NAS Gallery: 8 June – 19 August Performance Space: 8 June—19 August 2006 SCA Galleries, Sydney College of the Arts, The University of Sydney: 8 June—9 September 2006 Sydney Opera House: The Playhouse, The Studio, Exhibition Hall Tin Sheds Gallery, Faculty of Architecture, The University of Sydney: 21 July—13 August 2006 JCDecaux Street Furniture, Sydney CBD: 5 June – 2 July 2006

only in german

15th Biennale of Sydney 2006
Kurator: Charles Merewether

Künstler: Hamra Abbas, Ai Weiwei, Anas Al-Shaikh, Navjot Altaf, Ghada Amer, Karin Mamma Andersson, Nina Nawalowalo Aotearoa, Alfredo & Isabel Aquilizan, Fikret Atay, The Atlas Group / Walid Ra´ad, Miroslaw Balka, Zarina Bhimji, Stella Brennan, Elina Brotherus, Cao Fei, Chen Chieh-jen, Olga Chernysheva, Jose Damasceno, Calin Dan, Tacita Dean, Sebastian Diaz Morales, Biljana Djurdjevic, Meschac Gaba, Ghazel , Antony Gormley, Julie Gough, Brett Graham, Shilpa Gupta, Laurent Gutierrez, Dmitry Gutov, Mona Hatoum, Diango Hernandez, Emily Jacir, Sejla Kameric, Amar Kanwar, Hassan Khan, Elena Kovylina, Ruark Lewis, Liu Xiaodong, Sharon Lockhart, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Lu Qing, Marepe , Julie Mehretu, Almagul Menlibaeva, Hayati Mokhtar, Daido Moriyama, Rabih Mroue, Ujino Muneteru, Katrina Neiburga, Tom Nicholson, Rose Nolan, Damian Ortega, Adrian Paci, Milenko Prvacki, Tawatchai Puntusawasdi, Qin Yufen, Rachael Rakena, Raqs Media Collective ( Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula, Shuddhabrata Sengupta), John Reynolds, Liisa Roberts, Liza Ryan, Raeda Saadeh, Anri Sala, Jayce Salloum, Ruti Sela & Maayan Amir, Nurit Sharett, Ranjani Shettar, Mladen Stilinovic, Alia Syed, Kei Takemura, Fiona Tan, Kai Syng Tan, Imants Tillers, Milica Tomic, Muruvvet Turkyilmaz, U Sunok, Lidwien van de Ven, Stephen Vitiello, Savanhdary Vongpoothorn, Elena Vorobyeva & Viktor Vorobyev, Akram Zaatari