The Berlin Biennial is regarded as the most significant showcase of contemporary art and is the only biennial of its kind in Germany. Every two years leading curators venture out to discover less-established positions of recent contemporary art and offer them a presentation venue. The Berlin Biennale is known for finding novel, “non-artsy” spaces for displaying contemporary art and commissioning new works which offer artists the chance to achieve a breakthrough on the international stage.
DIS appointed as curatorial team
The New York based collective DIS, composed of Lauren Boyle, Solomon Chase, Marco Roso, and David Toro, has been appointed as curatorial team of the 9th Berlin Biennale.
The cultural interventions of DIS are manifest across a range of media and platforms, from site-specific museum and gallery exhibitions to ongoing online projects which most notably include DIS Magazine, a virtual platform that examines art, fashion, music, and culture, constructing and supporting new creative practices. Recent ventures include DISimages, 2013, a fully operational stock photography agency that enlists artists to produce images available for private and commercial use, and DISown, a retail venture aimed at expanding creative economies. Across its various endeavors, DIS explores the tension between popular culture and institutional critique, while facilitating projects for the most public and democratic of all forums—the Internet.
The curator collective DIS is not interested in occupying “abandoned” spaces in the city. With its selection of exhibition venues, it rather aims to make the paradoxes that are increasingly shaping our world in 2016 more tangible – the virtual as real, nations as trademarks, people as data, culture as capital, wellness as politics, and happiness as gross domestic product.
The Biennale will begin at the Akademie der Künste on Pariser Platz, one of Berlin’s top tourist attractions. It is a place encircled in an all but invisible web of economic and political power. The Akademie der Künste is a historic site, protected from the elements by an expansive glass façade. Situated in close proximity to the government district, it exemplifies the visual codes of the state – national legacy with a sheen of transparency.
The ESMT European School of Management and Technology is housed in the former East German national council building. The building’s socialistic past is veiled by contemporary codes of global business; the aesthetics of the former socialist state now preside over live reports of the German stock market and an ultra-modern training facility for tomorrow’s business leaders.
On the Landwehr Canal in Kreuzberg, a former telecommunications bunker has been renovated and converted into the new home of the Feuerle Collection. As a museum-sized private collection open to the public, the space marks the steady influx of collectors to Berlin – and the kinds of public-private partnerships driving its cultural economy.
As in past years, the KW Institute for Contemporary Art will serve as a central exhibition venue.
The Berlin Biennial is organized by KW Institute for Contemporary Art.