7th Biennale of Art and Culture of São Tomé e Príncipe
November 1 – 30, 2013
One of the conclusions of the 6th Biennale (2011) was the need to invent a new concept for the next Biennale of Art and Culture of São Tomé e Príncipe. The answer was “(re)Design(in) STP*”. The Biennale will therefore reuse cultural heritage in order to redesign São Tomé e Príncipe. This will be done in collaboration with invited artists/thinkers/makers and persons with provoking ideas from other parts of the world. This year a special role is given to Angola, a country which in this edition of the Biennale participates as invited country. The collaboration should result in the establishment of a permanent platform for artistic and cultural exchanges between various countries.
“I am STP” (“Eu estou STP”) will be the main motto of the Biennale’s campaign relating to citizenship, cultural heritage and development. Its objective is to make national and international authorities as well as the population in general, (more) aware of the importance and value of the country’s tangible and intangible cultural heritage, and the need to reconsider its social-economic and cultural uses. This for example includes the revaluation of architecture, Tchiloli (traditional theatre) and gastronomy.
The 7th Biennale will promote the cultural richness of the São Tomé e Príncipe and demonstrate the important role which this has in the development strategy of the country. It will involve young national artists, students and the São Toméan community in general and, in partnership with various national and international organizations, approximately 40 artists from Europe, America and Africa, with a strong presence from Angola, as invited country. It is anticipated that about 4000 persons will participate in the Biennale during the period of its realization (excluding the participation of local communities).
The guiding methodology for the project is principally to intensify the rediscovery, re-creation, of the São Toméan daily environment, applying a new perspective, amongst others through interaction with the Biennale’s participants. The residencies, debates, reflections, experiments, conferences, workshops and knowledge sharing between artists from various backgrounds and countries will promote the exchange of experiences and know-how and the revaluation of culture as an instrument for development.
Photo: Santomean Tchiloli, a type of theatre revealing how two very opposite cultures can manifest a form of co-existence through the performing arts.