The 32nd Bienal de São Paulo – INCERTEZA VIVA came to an end last Sunday (11/12) having chalked up over 900 thousand visitors, the highest number in a decade. Under the general curatorship of Jochen Volz and co-curators Gabi Ngcobo (South Africa), Júlia Rebouças (Brazil), Lars Bang Larsen (Denmark) and Sofía Olascoaga (Mexico), the show focussed on notions of “uncertainty” in order to reflect on the current conditions for life and contemporary art’s strategies for dwelling therein.
Conceived over a period of 23 months, starting in February 2015, the process involved teachers, students, artists, activists, indigenous leaders, educators, scientists and thinkers, and works that broached all the most pressing contemporary themes—global warming, the loss of biological and cultural diversity, rising political and economic instability, and the inequitable distribution of the Earth’s natural resources. A skate bowl, a tent for conversation and rituals, and a restaurant serving organic food were just some of the exhibition’s highlights.
“The reflections and discussions drawn from contact with the works and the artists are of inestimable value. Based on these experiences we can imagine new paths into the future. The Bienal showed just how important culture and education are in society. I’m extremely grateful for the public’s visitation and participation”, said Volz. For the President of the Bienal Foundation, Luís Terepins, “the public’s interest confirms that the Bienal made the right move in turning itself into a platform for research, experimentation and artistic debate, investing more and more in commissioned works and in fostering contemporary output.”
* Inaugurated on September 7, the exhibition was structured around dialogues between the work of 81 artists and collectives from 33 countries.
* The 32 nd Bienal stood by its commitment to free admission to the exhibition. All 155 events on the public program, which included seminars, workshops, encounters, performances, shows and work- activations, were absolutely free of charge.
* Between January and December 2016, 96,013 students, teachers, researchers, artists, guests and walk-in visitors took part in the Diffusion and Mediation actions on the educational program, including laboratories, guided tours, lectures, presentations and studio activities.
Furthering our traveling show program, which began at the 29th Bienal, condensed versions of the 32nd Bienal will visit 12 Brazilian cities and towns in 2017. The exhibitions will be held in conjunction with partner institutions in each city/town. International traveling shows are confirmed for Colombia, Chile and Portugal.