Poetics, Politics, Places, curated by Dr. Nayla Tamraz, will bring the work of seven Arab artists to Argentina as part of BienalSur, the first International Biennial of Contemporary Art of South America

From September to December, the first edition of BienalSur, the first International Biennial of Contemporary Art of South America, is bringing an ambitious programme of art and cultural events to more than 30 cities in 15 different countries. Simultaneous exhibitions are taking place in museums, cultural centres, iconic buildings and public spaces across the continent, thanks to a joint initiative by the participating countries.

Conceived on the basis of a global network of institutional collaboration, BienalSur aims at establishing a dialogue on equal terms between prominent international and South American artists, focusing on the concepts of space and territoriality and built on the idea of a “Global South.” Multiple cities in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Mexico and Cuba will host exhibitions and interventions over a period of four months. Cities in Benin, Japan, Spain, France and Germany are also collaborating, and will host simultaneous events. A total of more than 250 artists and curators from five continents are set to participate, having been selected after an open call that elicited more than 2500 proposals from 78 countries.

Organised by Argentina’s Universidad Nacional de Tres de Febrero, the biennial will also include artists from the Arab world. Poetics, Politics, Places, curated by Dr. Nayla Tamraz, a Lebanese writer, art critic and professor of literature and art history, will feature work by seven regional artists. The exhibition was selected to open at the Museo Provincial de Bellas Artes Timoteo Navarro in Tucuman, Argentina, on September 23, under the patronage of the Lebanese Ministry of Culture.

Tamraz has chosen to exhibit work by Etel Adnan, Mireille Kassar, Cynthia Zaven, Nadim Asfar, Daniele Genadry, Gilbert Hage and Saba Innab, all of whom share the common experience of living outside their territories of origin. The works in Poetics, Politics, Places reflect on the topics of displacement and exile, poetics and the spaces of the “in-between,” with a common tendency to redefine the notion of territory in the light of globalisation.

by Irene McConnell

Featured image: Mireille Kassar, N°2-Strips, 27,5 × 7 cm, 2014, arche paper, natural pigments.

A version of this article appeared in print in Selections, A Dialogue Between Generations of Arab Women in Art #42, page 20.