Biennale of Sydney announces 2022 exhibition: rīvus


The Biennale of Sydney announced the first group of artists participating in the 23rd edition of the event, open to the public from March 12 to June 13, 2022. They also announced the title of this major international contemporary art event: rīvus.

Situated along the waterways of the Gadigal and Burramattagal people, the 2022 Biennale of Sydney will be articulated through a series of conceptual wetlands and imagined ecosystems populated by artworks, public programs, experiments, research and activisms, following the currents of meandering tributaries that expand into a delta of interrelated ideas.

Those invited to take part in the 23rd Biennale of Sydney will be known as “participants” rather than “artists” reflecting their diverse talents, skills, practice—and modes of being—that extend beyond the realm of the visual arts. The list of participants announced today live and work across 33 countries on six continents including Cameroon, Cuba, Venezuela, Slovenia, Taiwan, Tonga, and the Netherlands.

While the locations for the 23rd Biennale of Sydney will be announced later this year, for the first time, the Cutaway, a cultural venue situated in Barangaroo Reserve on Sydney’s magnificent harbour, will be among them.

In a panel discussion facilitated by First Nations journalist Rachael Hocking, the Curatorium spoke of waterways as dynamic living systems with varying degrees of political agency.

The Curatorium said: “Indigenous knowledge has long understood non-human entities as living ancestral beings with a right to life that must be protected. But only recently have some plants, mountains, and bodies of water been granted legal personhood. If we can recognise that a river has a voice, what might it say?

rīvus will enable aqueous beings—rivers, wetlands, and other salt and freshwater ecosystems—to share a dialogue with artists, architects, designers, scientists, and communities. Considering the water ecology’s perspective raises unlikely questions: Can a river sue over psychoactive sewage? Will oysters grow teeth in aquatic revenge? What do the eels think? Are waves the ocean’s desire?”

Barbara Moore, Chief Executive Officer, Biennale of Sydney said: “Admission to the Biennale of Sydney is free for all to enjoy, with an open invitation for you to experience the most innovative contemporary art and ideas from around the world in some of Sydney’s most stunning and accessible public spaces. This edition of the Biennale will be all about our connections, and disconnections, with water, and as a result, with each other. It will be a beautiful thing to experience.”

The first group of artist participating in the 23rd Biennale of Sydney (2022) are:

A4C Arts for the Commons (Ecuador / Italy)
Ackroyd & Harvey (England)
Robert Andrew (Yawuru, Australia)
Ana Barboza and Rafael Freyre (Peru)
Badger Bates (Barkandji, Australia)
Milton Becerra (Venezuela / France)
Cave Urban (Australia)
Hera Büyüktaşcıyan (Turkey)
Tania Candiani (Mexico)
Yoan Capote (Cuba)
Casino Wake Up Time (Bundjalung, Kamillaroi, Australia)
Carolina Caycedo (Colombia / USA)
Alex Cerveny (Brazil)
Erin Coates (Australia)
Cian Dayrit (Philippines)
Melissa Dubbin & Aaron S. Davidson (USA)
Matias Duville (Argentina)
Clemencia Echeverri (Colombia)
Embassy of the North Sea (North Sea / The Netherlands)
Juliana Góngora Rojas (Colombia)
Julie Gough (Trawlwoolway, Australia)
Senior Craftsman Rex Greeno and son Dean Greeno (Palawa, Australia)
David Haines & Joyce Hinterding (Australia / England)
Sheroanawe Hakihiiwe (Yanomami, Venezuela)
Dale Harding (Bidjara / Ghungalu / Garingbal, Australia)
Joey Holder (England)
Marguerite Humeau (France)
Aluaiy Kaumakan (Paiwan Nation, Paridrayan Community, Taiwan)
Pushpa Kumari (India)
Eva L’Hoest (Belgium)
Mata Aho Collective (Te Atiawa ki Whakarongotai, Ngāti Toa Rangatira, Ngāti Awa, Ngāi Tūhoe, Ngāti Pūkeko, Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi Te Rangi, Rangitāne, Ngāti Kahungungu ki Wairarapa,
Aotearoa New Zealand)
Clare Milledge (Australia)
Yuko Mohri (Japan)
Moogahlin Performing Arts with Aanmitaagzi Big Medicine Studio (Murrawarri, Biripi, Australia; Ojibway / Mohawk, Mi’kmaq, Turtle Island Canada)
New Landscapes Institute (Australia)
New-Territories _ S/he _f.Roche (France)
Leeroy New (Philippines)
Wura-Natasha Ogunji (Nigeria / USA)
Mike Parr (Australia)
Marjetica Potrč (Slovenia)
Caio Reisewitz (Brazil)
Tabita Rezaire (France / French Guiana)
Duke Riley (USA)
Abel Rodríguez (Mogaje Guihu) (Nonuya, Colombia)
Teho Ropeyarn (Angkamuthi / Yadhaykana, Australia)
Diana Scherer (Germany / The Netherlands)
Dineo Seshee Bopape (South Africa)
Komunidad X Sipat Lawin (Philippines)
Kiki Smith (USA)
Paula de Solminihac (Chile)
STARTTS (NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors) and Jiva Parthipan (Australia)
Jenna Sutela (Finland / Germany)
Imhathai Suwatthanasilp (Thailand)
Leanne Tobin (Dharug, Australia)
Barthélémy Toguo (Cameroon / France)
Sopolemalama Filipe Tohi (Tonga / Aotearoa New Zealand)
Hanna Tuulikki (England / Scotland / Finland)
Gal Weinstein (Israel)
Zheng Bo (Bai, China)

The team of curators—the Curatorium—developing and realising the 2022 edition represent the Biennale of Sydney’s core exhibition partners:

José Roca, Artistic Director, 23rd Biennale of Sydney
Paschal Daantos Berry, Head of Learning and Participation, Art Gallery of New South Wales
Anna Davis, Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia
Hannah Donnelly, Producer, First Nations Programs, Information + Cultural Exchange (I.C.E.)
Talia Linz, Curator, Artspace

The 23rd Biennale of Sydney will be presented free to the public from Saturday, March 12 to Monday, June 13, 2022.

Note: rīvus means “stream” in Latin. Interestingly, the word “rivalry” has its origins in the Latin root rivālis which is derived from rīvus. rivālis / rivalry means “one who uses the same stream / water source.”

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