by Judith Vallette // Aug. 28, 2020
So far the 11th Berlin Biennale has existed as a series of separate experiences – exp. 1, exp. 2 and exp. 3 – which have taken place throughout the year despite some postponements. On September 5th, the Berlin Biennale’s concluding event, titled ‘The Crack Begins Within’, is set to fully open to the public. The title comes from the poet Iman Mersal, who references motherhood as a space of transition that should not be simply read as a binary between old and new. This concept for the epilogue to the Biennale sheds light on the cracks in the system and the new forms of solidarity being forged by healers and carers. Despite new restrictions, the program still aims to “contemplate the idea of exchange as an overall concept that weaves together both curatorial and pedagogical practices…[trying out] practices of communicating beyond boundaries, of gathering cautiously, listening in solidarity, rethinking established approaches and building fleeting learning communities.”
The curators for this year’s Biennale for Contemporary Art—María Berríos, Renata Cervetto, Lisette Lagnado and Agustín Pérez Rubio—who all have South American and femme-identified backgrounds, have carefully selected the participants for the experiences, as well as the epilogue. Thematics presented throughout the year resurface in this final chapter: the colonial symbolism of the church and an alternative in an “Anti-Church” as a safe space for the marginalized; the connotation of clothing and how a dissident body rebels against constructs through the choice of clothes; the looting and erasure perpetuated by museums; and the idea of the Biennale as a living archive in which multiple stories have been brought to public attention.
While the past experiences of the Biennale have taken place in Wedding at ExRotaprint, this epilogue bridges together different art spaces in the city with the additions of three more venues: KW Institute for Contemporary Art, daad Galerie and Gropius Bau. With events and happenings lasting from September 5th until November 1st, the Biennale is a set to reflect not only on its own process but also on the unexpected events of 2020.
Plus, Berlin Art Link is giving away two tickets to one reader for the Berlin Biennale’s exhibition ‘The Crack Begins Within’ so be sure to follow the instructions below for your chance to win!