In Mongolia, one of the most sparsely populated countries on earth, one would not typically expect to find an international contemporary art biennale.
However, since 2010, a biennale has been taking place here that takes as its very starting point the plains, mountains and nomadic culture of this remote nation nestled in between Russia and China.
Land Art Mongolia, or LAM for short, has been taking place here since 2010. Initially founded in 2006 during a Land Art Symposium held in Bor-Öndör in the Gobi Desert, the 1st international Biennial was curated by the Canadian art critic Robin Aexander Suri, and took place among the complex rock formations in Bag Gazriin Chuluu, inner-Mongolia.
This year’s edition of LAM, organized by former Tate Liverpool Director, Lewis Biggs, is inspired by the natural landscape and seemingly unending beauty of Mongolia. After an open-call for projects was circulated last December, Biggs selected a narrow group of 19 projects from over 200 applicants to be executed in the Mongul landscape.
Entitled “Who Are We Now?”, Biggs selected artists who proposed investigating the relationship between art and humanism in the Mongolian context. “How do we situate art, and specifically art made in the Mongolian context, in relation to Humanism and the Anthropocene Age?,” Biggs asked in his curatorial statement.
Several household names were selected for LAM 2018, including Rirkrit Tiravanija, the famous Thai artist known for pioneering forms of relational art, as well as Sophie Guyot, Camille Biddell, and others.
Though documentation of the projects has so far been scarce (perhaps intentionally?), curators are soon planning a display at the Mongolian National Modern Art Gallery in Ulaanbaatar, the country’s capital, beginning August 28.
“Who Are We Now” continues throughout Mongolia until August 28. Documentation will be on display at the the Mongolian National Modern Art Gallery—Ulaanbaatar 14200, Mongolia.