20 a-n Artist and Joint (Artist and Arts Organiser) members have been awarded bursaries to attend the opening days of two of this summer’s major visual arts events.
The bursaries of £600 will enable 10 members to attend the launch of The 10th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art, while a further 10 members will travel to Palermo in Sicily for the preview days of Manifesta 12 .
This year’s Berlin Biennale will be curated by Gabi Ngcobo in collaboration with an invited curatorial team from Uganda, USA, Brazil and Germany under the title ‘We don’t need another hero’.
a-n members awarded bursaries to attend the preview, which takes place at various venues around the German capital, are: Kurt Hickson, Nikki Kane, Helen Lavery, Susanna Osborn, Rossanne Pellegrino, Sheyda Porter, Chloë Reid, Amahra Spence, Monica Tolia and Cathy Wade.
The 12th edition of the ‘European Nomadic Biennial’ Manifesta will explore Palermo’s history of migration and take the theme of ‘The Planetary Garden’ as its curatorial starting point.
a-n members awarded bursaries to attend the Manifesta 12 preview are: Ania Bas, Amelia Crouch, Silke Dettmers, Fionn Duffy, Carrie Foulkes, Carl Gent, Laura Hindmarsh, Tania Kovats, Melanie Menard and Eva Rowson.
a-n’s Biennial Bursaries build on previous awards that have enabled a-n members to visit the Venice Biennale (2013, 2015 and 2017) and Documenta (2017).
Speaking about the selection process, a-n’s External Programmes and Partnerships Manager Hannah Pierce explained that the bursaries aim to make artists more visible at these major events, whilst also offering artists the chance to gain new perspectives on how the art world works.
“The quality of applications for the a-n Biennial Bursaries was very high, and applicants demonstrated a keen understanding and enthusiasm for the value of attending and engaging with these high-profile international art events,” she said.
“It is increasingly important at this time to enable and support cultural exchange opportunities for UK based artists across Europe. We hope this year’s group of a-n members will benefit as much from attending as those who previously received our Documenta and Venice Biennale bursaries.”
Discussing how bursary awards benefitted those a-n members selected to attend the Venice Biennale preview in 2017, artist and AIR Council member Binita Walia wrote in her report on a-n News: “It felt social and less exclusive to be part of a larger cohort, so even though you were going around exhibitions on your own most of the time, you could connect and discuss the experience together at lunch or in the evenings.
“Art people were friendly and approachable in Venice – they seemed to relax and let their guard down – so it felt easy striking up conversations which in a UK context would be unimaginable, unless you are very bold.”
1, 3. Orto Botanico. Copyright: Manifesta, Photo: Cave Studio. Courtesy: Manifesta
2. George Shire, performing The Ontological Turn, sonic performance and lecture, 7 July 2017, as part of ‘I’m not who you think I’m not #1’ public program in the lead up to the 10th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art Photo: F Anthea Schaap