press release

Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art is pleased to announce its 6th edition. Titled Pandemonium – Art in a Time of Creativity Fever, the biennial is an occasion to mull over the turbulence and turmoil that is today's world. In John Milton's epic Paradise Lost (1671), Pandemonium is the castle built by Lucifer and his band after they had been booted out of heaven. It is the base camp from which they plot against the 'old order'. But it is also a platform from which they seek to launch the project of another creation, a new kind of world albeit a 'devilish' one. Through 'Pandemonium', Milton reflects on the turbulence and topsy-turvy of civil war England. Was this only about a sense of hurly-burly, disorder and dismal confusion—of 'sheer pandemonium'? Or was it also about transformation and creative emergence—the making of new worlds, possibilities and paradigms? The term has both positive and negative connotations. From William Blake to Derek Jarman, from punk to pop bands and everyday 'hubbub' of street sound and speech, it has been used to explore chaos and disorder that is at the same time about the emergence of new worlds, alternative global modernities, other possibilities.

For the Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art 2011, Pandemonium is a Lab, an experiment zone, bubbling with ideas. Wary of 'paradises lost', of utopias that have turned sour or gone of the rails, it sounds today's turbulent world for new possibilities and perspectives, alternative forms of life and living that are brewing up. What shape of Europe wells up from economic crash and nosedive? How is the project of 'modernity and Enlightenment' forged in earlier episodes of chaos and tumult shaping up today?

The curator for Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art, Professor Sarat Maharaj, is working together with a team of co-curators: artist Dorothee Albrecht, curator Stina Edblom and Professor Gertrud Sandqvist. Together they have turned this year's biennial into a process, with space for in-depth reflection and knowledge production. The performance program City Excavations initiated the biennial process in June and served as a platform for artistic explorations of the city of Göteborg and its history. A number of Summer Academies on the Biennial theme have been established in collaboration with the School of Photography and the School of Design and Craft, to further engage in the ideas and research connected to the biennial theme.

This year the biennial takes place at four different venues; Röda Sten Art Center, Göteborg Konsthall, The Gothenburg Museum of Art and Konsthallen – Bohusläns museum.

For detailed information on program, press preview, transportation etc please visit or contact

Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art is organised by Röda Sten Art Centre, with financial support from the City of Göteborg's Cultural Affairs committee, Region Västra Götaland and The Swedish Arts Council.

Artists Francis Alÿs, Örn Alexander, Ámundason, Zarina Bhimji, Wim Botha, Matthew Buckingham, Chen Chieh-jen, Chimurenga, Yoel Díaz Vázquez, Jimmie Durham, Klas Eriksson, Karolina Erlingsson, Liam Gillick, Goldin+Senneby, Zille Homma Hamid, Mahlet Ogbe Habte, Florian Hecker, Lisa Jeannin/Rolf Schuurmans, Olav Christoffer Jensen, Isaac Julien, Reena Saini Kallat, John Kelly, Matts Leiderstam, Katarina Nitsch/Patrik Bengtsson, Antonio Vega Macotela, Ernesto Neto, The New Beauty Council, William Pope.L, Hans Hamid Rasmussen, Viktor Rosdahl, Tino Sehgal, Bryndis Sneabjörnsdottir/Mark Wilson, Åsa Sonjasdotter, Inga Svala Thórsdóttir, Jana Winderen, Henrik Frisk/Stefan Östersjö

Curated by Sarat Maharaj Co-curators: Dorothee Albrecht, Stina Edblom, Gertrud Sandqvist