Performa 2013 will mark the debut of a national pavilions program, called Performa Pavilions, with artist and curatorial representatives from Norway and Poland as the inaugural participants.

RoseLee Goldberg. Courtesy Performa

This reports Andrew Russeth in Gallerist NY:

“The starting point was considering the pavilions at the Venice Biennale, and the fact that they are an ongoing responsibility of the nations that sponsor them,” Performa’s founder, RoseLee Goldberg, told Gallerist in a telephone interview. “I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be interesting to consider a more permanent relationship with a country rather than a one time sponsorship, and thus forge a deeper relationship with that country’s art, culture, and politics?’”

The term ‘pavilion’ is meant only in spirit. As with Performa itself, which Ms. Goldberg refers to as “a museum without walls,” the pavilion projects will take place throughout New York. The two countries will work with Performa to commission a major new work from an artist and will support various other curatorial and educational projects as part of the biennial. Norwegian curator Randi Grov Berger will join Performa for six months leading up to the biennial.

She’ll “be familiarizing herself with New York and how we create this biennial in the city,” Ms. Goldberg said. “She’ll learn about our journey to this point, how a nonprofit works, how we educate the public, how we work with artists. Randi will be an integral part of the team. We then turn it around and ask her and the Norwegian team, ‘What pieces might we want to take back to Norway?’” The process, she hopes, will facilitate a broad cultural exchange, which is already a hallmark of the biennial.

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