Helga-Marie Nordby, Chair, LIAF Artistic Advisory Board announced the appointment of Francesco Urbano Ragazzi as curators of LIAF 2022: “We are delighted to announce that Francesco Urbano Ragazzi will curate the 2022 edition of Lofoten International Art Festival. The duo has a track record of strong and compelling exhibition projects. Writing and telling stories are a vital part of their practice, and we look forward to seeing what their encounter with the Lofoten Islands and the North will bring forth.”
The curators responded: “We are thrilled to be part of the glorious history of the LIAF Biennale, embarking on this journey northward preceded by many colleagues we esteem. At the end of a pandemic and in the midst of a global climate crisis, few places in the world today are more pertinent than the Lofoten Islands as the setting for an art biennial. The Lofoten Islands are a peaceful yet extreme ecosystem in which humans have always faced isolation and sought balance between themselves and the environment. Drawing on the wisdom of these places and the communities that live here, LIAF 2022 will push the boundaries of reality by embracing the ghosts of our time.”
About the curators
Francesco Urbano Ragazzi is a curatorial duo founded in Paris in 2008, trained in ontology, gender, and media studies. The duo has developed The Internet Saga, a research platform and cycle of exhibitions that started with a homonymous solo show by independent filmmaker Jonas Mekas at Palazzo Foscari Contarini (2015) and culminated in the exhibition Hillary: The Hillary Clinton Emails by the poet Kenneth Goldsmith at Cinema Teatro Italia (2019), both presented on the occasion of the Venice Biennale. Within this framework, the team has also developed commissioned projects in partnership with private and public institutions such as CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research (Geneva), the Bucharest Biennale, and Maraya Art Centre (Sharjah).
In 2015, Francesco Urbano Ragazzi established a close collaboration with the late Jonas Mekas, curating shows, publications and screenings worldwide, including Again, Again It All Comes Back to Me in Brief Glimpses, the artist’s first retrospective exhibition in Asia (the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, 2018), his last solo exhibition (at Ásmundarsalur, Reykjavik International Film Festival, 2018), and the publishing project Transcript 04 44’ 14”: Lithuania and the Collapse of the USSR (Humboldt Books, 2020). Since 2017 the duo has been directing the Church of Chiara Fumai, the archive and estate of the Italian feminist artist Chiara Fumai.
Over the years, Francesco Urbano Ragazzi has also curated projects and exhibitions for, among others, the Italian Ministry of Equal Opportunities, Missoni (New York), Centro Ricerca Castello di Rivoli (Turin), ISCP (New York), Centre d’Art Contemporain Genève, La Loge (Brussels), La Casa Encendida (Madrid), Institut Français (Paris), Futura – Centre for contemporary art (Prague), Ruya Foundation (Baghdad) and the Emirates Foundation (Abu Dhabi).