LB01 The 1st Edition of Lahore Biennale to open in March


The Lahore Biennale Foundation is pleased to announce further details of its inaugural Biennale (LB01), which will take place in Lahore, Pakistan from March 18 to March 31, 2018.

The opening weekend program of LB01 commences March 16 to March 19, and includes performances, guided tours of art works and venues, as well as collateral gallery programming within the city.

Exhibitions and events for LB01 will be held at seven major venues that engage with the city’s Mughal, Colonial and Modern layers. The inaugural Biennale recognizes the city in relation to its region, as reflected in the presentation of artists selected, and in the Biennale’s core and collateral programming.

Despite being a continually expanding and evolving metropolis, Lahore has not so far significantly featured as a space that engages artistic practice with diverse publics. Given the limited representation of Pakistan in global media, and the relative scarcity of regional dialogues within South Asia, there is a real urgency to foster a deeper and multifaceted dialogue between Lahore, the region, and the rest of the world. These critical engagements can further energize new relationships of Lahore’s residents and visitors with the city, where the past can be reflected upon, the present debated in new ways, and the future anticipated in a pluralist and progressive direction.

LB01 understands inclusivity, collaboration, and public-engagement as being central to its vision. LB01 has invited artists, groups, and institutions to work on various scales and at multifaceted sites.

LB01 is supported by Government bodies, and has developed relations with international partners in order to bridge institutional gaps between Lahore and the rest of the world. LB01 aims to extend the perspectives and experiences gained by the Lahore Biennale Foundation through its multiple public activities over the past three years, and to foster a broadened approach towards public-centric arts projects during and beyond the LB01 events.

Over 50 artists and collectives will participate in LB01, including artists based in Bangladesh, India, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, Sri Lanka, as well as from Europe and the United States. Participating artists in LB01 include Amar Kanwar, Naeem Mohaiemen, Shahzia Sikander and Shirin Neshat. Artists presenting major new commissions include Ali Kazim, Awami Art Collective, Aisha Khalid, and Imran Qureshi.

The opening and closing weekends of the Biennale include programs of talks and performances. Opening performances include those by composer, Du Yun and vocalist, Ali Sethi. Closing performances include a sketch by Salima Hashmi, a performance-reading by Naiza Khan and dramatic readings by Zambeel. In addition, a full program of academic and artistic talks will be held every day during LB01.


The LB01 Academic Forum is a fourteen-day program organized by Iftikhar Dadi that will bring in curators, critics, and scholars to Lahore as an integral dimension of the Lahore Biennale 01. The forum will include public lectures, panel discussions, and workshops presented by artists and academics who work on Asia and the global South. Themes addressed will include topics such as the transaction between studio practice and social engagement, the relation of art practice to history, archive, memory.

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