This year’s edition of the Colombo Art Biennale, entitled ‘ Making History’ is the biggest yet and will feature works by artists and artist collectives from 60 artists from fifteen countries.

3rd Colombo Art Biennale

Making History

31st January – 9th February 2014

Founder & Director: Annoushka Hempel
International Director: Neil Butler
International Curator: Chandraguptha Thenuwara 
Regional & Local Curator: Amit Kumar Jain
Live Art Curator: Ruhanie Perera

Annoushka Hempel, CAB’s founding director says “‘Making History’ is a provocation exploring the artistic adventure of making history. It enquires into the contemporary aesthetic experience, from historical, present and future points of view, to reveal a possible reality of making history as part of an art historical trajectory. 

This third edition of CAB has revealed ‘Making History’ to be a fully International Biennale. Artists include 25 of some of Sri Lanka’s most exciting and recognized artists, such as Anoli Perera, Vimukthi Jayasundera, Pala Pothupitiye & Mahen Walter Perera. CAB will also be showcasing nine interesting artists from the region fromIndia, Bangladesh, Nepal & Qatar, including TV Santosh (India), Mahbubur Rahman(Bangladesh) & Sunil Sigdel (Nepal). The 20 international artists are coming from the UK, Scotland, Ireland, France, Australia, Italy, Germany, Austria, Sweden, China, Iran, and the USA. These include Anthony Haughey (Ireland), Rosemarie Trockel (Germany), Pietro Ruffo (Italy)&Olivier Grossetete (France).

Making History will present a varied collection of artworks to include paintings, sculpture, video, installation, sound and performance at our seven different locations that include JDA Perera, Park Street Mews, Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute, Goethe Institute, Post-Graduate Institute of archaeology, Lionel Wendt Galleries & Museum of Economic History.

The Live Art segment of the Biennale brings into the unlikely nooks and corners of CAB galleries across Colombo, spilling over into the streets, moments that take on, engage with, and interrupt the notion of ‘liveness’ in performance. Using movement, clown, contact improvisation techniques, poetry and performance art, the live art segment brings into conversation artists with diverse and disparate histories of practice. The Live Artists include Priyanthi Anusha (visual artist), Janani Cooray (performance artist), Kumari Kumaragamage (writer), Jake Oorloff (theatre practitioner), Venuri Perera (dance/theatre performer), Thomas Pritchard (theatre/dance performer), Adrian Schvarzstein (clown/circus actor) and Eva Priyanka Wegener (movement practitioner).

Enhancing the CAB programme, CAB is honoured to have the British Council’s ‘Homelands’ exhibition as part of the Biennale. A 21st century contemporary art story of home, away, and all the places in between. Curated by Latika Gupta and including well know names such as Nathan Coley & Mona Hatoum. One of the year’s most anticipated exhibitions travelling around South Asia this year is joining CAB in Colombo.

CAB Around Town Fringe events this year will include, Barefoot,will show a collection of paintings from the Gallery’s private collection that will chronologically depict the Gallery’s history .Sethu Samudram, is an art project between Theertha Artists Collective in Sri Lanka and 1.Shanthi Road in Bangalore, consisting of drawings done by Indian and Sri Lankan artists at Red Dot Gallery’s new premises.Screenings, of short award winning videos by German artists will be screened at the Goethe Institute.

This year, Standard Chartered’s Colomboscope festival is sharing the same theme as CAB “Making History”.  This arts festival, now in its second edition will be presenting both local and international author readings, guided walks, talks, panel discussions, dance, drama and musical performances. These will be held historical venues to give festival goers a chance to discover and explore parts of Colombo rarely visited.Adopting an interdisciplinary approach to the Arts, Colomboscope 2014 sharing the theme of ’Making History’ CAB allowing  visitors to both events to enjoy  topics related to history and remembrance from different angles, reflected by various art forms.

Photo: Courtesy Colombo Art Biennale.

Read more about Colombo Art Biennale