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Fine Art PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Second Kiev International Biennale of Contemporary Art

Georg Schöllhammer and Hedwig Saxenhuber are the curators of the Second Kiev International Biennale of Contemporary Art ARSENALE 2014, as announced at Kiev’s Mystetskyi Arsenal Complex on November 26.

Photo: Maxim Belousov. Design: Barnbrook studio. Courtesy of Mystetskyi Arsenal. © Mystetskyi Arsenal, 2012.
Photo: Maxim Belousov. Design: Barnbrook studio. Courtesy of Mystetskyi Arsenal. © Mystetskyi Arsenal, 2012.
ARSENALE 2014 will run from September through November 2014 in Kiev, Ukraine with the Mystetskyi Arsenal serving as the main venue. The curators will present the concept and structure of ARSENALE 2014 at an upcoming press conference in spring 2014.

The Vienna-based curators bring an impressive experience to the Biennale. They have worked on renowned international cultural projects including Documenta, Manifesta, the Moscow Biennale, L’Internationale, Sweet 60s or the Vienna Festival and ViennaFair. Both are well known as editors of the influential journal springerin and for their excellent knowledge of the current and in particular Eastern European art scenes including the Ukrainian.

Georg Schöllhammer is an editor, writer and curator. He is founding editor of springerin, head of and has been editor-in-chief of Documenta 12, where he conceived and directed documenta_magazines. Recent exhibitions and projects Schöllhammer (co-)curated include Report on the Construction of a Spaceship Module (New Museum, NY, 2014), Trespassing Modernities (SALTGalata, Istanbul 2013), Sweet Sixties (Ashkal Alwan, Beirut; depo, Istanbul; Galerija Nova, Zagreb, 2013), Moments (ZKM, Karlsruhe 2012), Manifesta 8 (Murcia, 2010, together with He has published widely on contemporary art and theory. Among his latest books are KwieKulik (jrp ringier, 2013), Moments – A history of performance in 10 acts (Hatje Cantz, 2013) and Sweet Sixties – Avant-Gardes in the Shadows of the Cold War (Sternberg, 2013).

Hedwig Saxenhuber is a curator and co-editor of springerin – Hefte für Gegenwartskunst. She is founder and artistic director (together with Christian Kravagna) of kunstraum lakeside in Klagenfurt. Her recent projects include Unrest of Form, Vienna Festival 2013, Secession and Akademie der bildenden Künste; ViennaFair, 2011; Art + Politics, from the Collection of the City of Vienna, MUSA, Vienna 2008; Parallel Histories, 6. Gyumri Biennal, Armenia, 2008; VALIE EXPORT, Moscow Biennale, NCCA, 2007; and Postorange, Contemporary Art from Ukraine, Kunsthalle, Vienna 2006. Saxenhuber has been curator of Kunstverein München and has edited books amongst others on Louise Lawler, Trinh T. Minh-ha and Yvonne Rainer.

The initiator and Commissioner of the Kyiv International Biennale of Contemporary Art ARSENALE 2014 is Nataliia Zabolotna.

Nataliia Zabolotna is General Director of the Mystetskyi Arsenal National Cultural-Art and Museum Complex, founding editor and publisher Ukraine’s leading arts journal ART UKRAINE. She has developed a series of well-received continuing annual projects.

Inaugurated in 2012, the Kiev International Biennale of Contemporary Art ARSENALE is one of the largest international contemporary arts events in Eastern Europe. It represents a turning point in Ukraine’s cultural life by offering an unprecedented exposition which united works by Ukrainian contemporary artists with those of 100 leading artists from 30 countries in around 24,000 m2 of space at the Mystetskyi Arsenal. More than 135,000 guests have visited the event curated by British curator David Elliott.

The Mystetskyi Arsenal is Ukraine’s largest arts and culture museum complex.
The last three years of tireless activity at Mystetskyi Arsenal have seen 35 large-scale exhibitions viewed by more than one million visitors. A dedicated National Heritage Site, the Arsenal was originally constructed between 1783 and 1801. In the 20th century it was converted into an armaments plant. In 2003, the Arsenal was afforded the status of a cultural center.

Ongoing restorations and advance work on the construction of a multi-purpose museum complex provide a backdrop to exhibitions held at the Arsenal. The new structure is envisioned as a place to celebrate the history of Ukrainian art from antiquity to the current moment, to house visiting collections from leading international museums, and to serve as the nerve-center of the development of the Ukrainian creative arts. The Arsenal campus is comprised of over 60,000 square meters, and currently uses between 12,000 and 24,000 square meters for exhibitions.