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In the series of Biennial Foundation Talks: “Who Funds the Arts and Why we Should Care”, a professional meeting conceived and convened by Biennial Foundation at the upcoming ARCOmadrid, 2015.

Who Funds the Arts and Why we Should Care.

A professional meeting conceived and convened by Biennial Foundation at the upcoming ARCOmadrid.

Date: Saturday 28 February 2015.

Time: 4 PM

Venue: Encuentros Profesionales Lounge, Hall 9

The recent editions of some of the major contemporary art biennials were marked by serious dilemmas and conflicts leading to breaking, or at least weakening, the relations between their various stakeholders: publics, artists, curators, organizers, commissioners and/or sponsors. These events urge us to reconsider how we think about biennials.

This discussion aims to provide an opportunity for international colleagues to talk about the difficulties and realities in the making of biennials internationally. It will focus especially on issues of funding, questioning what effects financial resources have on supposedly independent curatorial and artistic narratives of major cultural events.

This meeting is closed to the general audience.


Olga Hatzidaki – (Moderator) Curator Biennial Foundation, Athens.

Rachel Spence – Art Critic Financial Times – Author of ‘Who funds the arts and why we should care’.

Khalil Rabah – artist, founder of the Riwaq Biennale in Palestine – Challenging what a biennial can be.

Galit Eilat – co-curator of the 31st Bienal de São Paulo – How to …….. fund biennials? Assessing the 31st Bienal.

Maria Papadimitriou – artist, representing Greece at the 56th Venice Biennale – towards the Greek pavilion.

Koyo Kouoh– curator, director Raw Material Company, Dakar – on funding African biennials and art events, the relation to the West.

Alevtina Kakhidze – artist from Ukraine – the politics of participation, Manifesta 10, St. Petersburg.

Annette Kulenkampff – CEO documenta – on learning from Athens.

Marieke van Hal – (Moderator) Director Biennial Foundation, Berlin.

Find here the article that inspired our thinking for this talk: Who funds the arts and why we should care – FT.com

The ARCO art fair Madrid will take place from 25 February – 1 March, 2015.

Image: Dan Perjovschi. The São Paulo Drawing, 2014. 31st Bienal de São Paulo. Photo: Biennial Foundation.