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Busan Biennale presents 2022 edition We, on the Rising Wave

September 3–November 6, 2022

The 2022 Busan Biennale will begin on September 3 and run through November 6. This event, which has the subject “We, on the Rising Wave,” will include 239 works created by 64 artists or artist teams totaling 80 people from 25 different nations.

The idea of a “wave” includes concepts such as movement, connection, radio waves and wavelengths, the earth and sea, and the churning tides of history. Being “on the rising wave” suggests that individual bodies are embedded in a historical and environmental framework resembling a wave, with humans and all living things and objects on our planet intricately entwined into one single global body.

The Korean city of Busan, which was once a little fishing village, gradually grew into the significant metropolis it is now. This process began with the reclamation of the sea to create a land-based port and continued through times of fast population influx and accelerated industrialization. Its complex built environment, which includes a combination of industrial and port facilities, vertical lines of skyscrapers, elevated roadways, and rivers, mountains, and oceans, is an excellent example of the dramatic transformations Asian cities have faced since the dawn of the modern period. Busan Biennale 2022 investigates Busan’s condition in the context of our global reality while presenting the stories that are concealed beneath Busan’s scenery and connecting them to other stories from farther away.

The four key themes at the center of the exhibition. It begins by emphasizing Busan’s identity in terms of “migration.” It draws connections between this identity and other histories of migration and the stories associated with them, drawing inspiration from the fact that the majority of the city’s population came from other regions as it underwent rapid expansion from the initial opening of the port in 1876 through the Korean War from 1950 to 1953 and the subsequent industrialization era. The experiences of women and female workers, who have long been overlooked despite making significant contributions to Busan’s industrialization process, are the subject of a second theme. The third theme is concerned with concerns pertaining to the urban ecology of Busan, which developed within a process of rapid growth and changes across a varied natural landscape of mountains, rivers, and the sea. The exhibition explores problems of coexistence between nature and humans in the circumstances we currently find ourselves facing by reflecting on the environmental destruction occurring today around the world and the ways in which lives have been influenced by it. Finally, the exhibition considers how modernity and technology have impacted the historical development of the city while speculating on how future technological advancements may impact the local environment. As it explores these four pathways, Busan Biennale 2022 considers the shape, state, and time in which our current “wave” is situated—and asks the question of what step we should take next.

Busan Biennale 2022 will also include a wide range of public activities, including performances, artist talks and lectures, and workshops, in addition to the exhibition. These include performances by Otobong Nkanga, Nina Beier + Bob Kil, and Cooking Sections for the opening and closing weekends, respectively. From Saturday, September 3 through late October, there will be artist talks and lectures that will give you the chance to learn more about the participating artists’ whole body of work, including the research, creation, and display processes. Along with Sandy Rodriguez, Sera Waters, and Ha Mihyun, a workshop has also been planned. Every Thursday through Sunday, at sunset, an outdoor theater at the Yeongdo Island exhibition site will show documentaries and movies of the participating artists. The documentary Still and All, directed by Busan-based Kim Young-jo, will be shown first. Mika Rottenberg and Mahyad Tousi’s movie Remote will have its Asian debut in October. On the Busan Biennale 2022 website and social media, you may get more information on the public programs and the screening schedule.

On the official Busan Biennale website, various types of online content are available to help with comprehending the show. Along with an audio guide and other details on the show and its contents, these provide explanations of the works and creators. A glossary-style introduction to significant events and locations connected to Busan, “Buoys” served as a source for the artwork created by the collaborating artists. A notebook and reference book for the curatorial workshops held between April and June are also available. A making-of film and an online tour provide additional opportunities for individuals interested in the Busan Biennale exhibition environment to experience it.

Busan Biennale
1191 Nakdongnam-ro, Hadan-dong, Saha-gu
Museum of Contemporary Art Busan, Yeongdo, Old Town in Busan City
49300 Busan
Republic of Korea
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 10am–6pm

T +82 51 503 6580
F +82 51 503 6584
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