March 14

SHARJAH BIENNIAL 11

H.H Sheikh Dr. SultanBin Mohammed Al-Qasimi  and curator Yuko Hasegawa

H.H Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammed Al-Qasimi and curator Yuko Hasegawa

Day One : The 11th Sharjah Biennial opened yesterday morning in the presence of H.H Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammed Al-Qasimi who was escorted through the exhibition spaces by Japanese curator Yuko Hasegawa. (Hasegawa is no stranger to Australians through her early involvement in Asia Pacific Triennials). The paparazzi were also there jostling with actual paparazzi to get pictures of the highly esteemed Sheikh of Sharjah and the curator. While it is difficult to know where to begin this story – suffice it to say (for the time being) that this was quite a glamorous event. Egyptian artist, Wael Shawky’s brilliant performance piece, Dictums 10:20 provided a scintillating splash of local culture to the opening. Kicking of in the Heritage or Historical area of Sharjah the Biennial takes place in Calligraphy Square,  beautiful older spaces, the Arts Area and in the brand new Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces which offer artists clean crisp adaptable spaces with lots of natural light bouncing off the white buildings outside. More than 100 artists architects, filmmakers, musicians and performers are participating in a program of exhibitions and events that “reassess the Westerncentrism of knowledge in modern times and reconsiders the relationship between the Arab world, Asia, the Far East, through North Africa and Latin America. But what of the art we can here you say ! After only one day it looks promising, however,  this is a complex environment and deserving of  some in depth discussion. This is a vastly different environment for the paparazzi and as a result they have channeled Henri Cartier Bresson with a more “documentary” approach …..  Sharjah Biennial 11 at various locations, Sharjah United Arab Emirates 11 March – 14 May.

work by

work by Shiro Takatani (Japan)

perfomance Wael Shawky Dictums 10 : 120

perfomance Wael Shawky Dictums 10 : 120

perfomance Wael Shawky Dictums 10 : 120

perfomance Wael Shawky Dictums 10 : 120

Emerati youth

Emerati youth

Eylien Konig (Germany) of VOVO! VOVO!

Eylien König (Germany) of VOVO! VOVO!

work by Gabriel Orozco (Mexico)

guests at opening with work by Gabriel Orozco (Mexico)

Otobong Nkanga (Belgium)

Otobong Nkanga (Belgium)

visitors from Japan meet local dudes

visitors from Japan meet local dudes

Magdi Mostafa (Egypt)

Magdi Mostafa (Egypt)

Otobong Nkanga performnace

Otobong Nkanga performance

opening ceremony

guests at the opening ceremony

IMG_0774

Basim Magdy (Egypt)

admiring work by Taus Makhacheva (Dagestan, Russia)

admiring work by Taus Makhacheva (Dagestan, Russia)

Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces and work by Wei Liu

Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces and work by Wei Liu

Witness

Within, 2/10 drummers performance composed and orchestrated by Tarek Atoui

Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces

Sharjah Art Foundation Art Spaces