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Ukrainian Pavilion Public Programme at the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia: Decolonising Art. Beyond the Obvious


Decolonising Art. Beyond the Obvious is an interdisciplinary programme of the Ukrainian Pavilion at the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia The Milk of Dreams that engages artists, curators, public intellectuals, researchers, and a wider audience.


The series of discussions, talks and meetings focus on a decolonial view on Ukraine and Eastern Europe as a response to the ongoing Russian aggression in Ukraine, but also the broader perspective on the global art scene in the current shift in the geopolitical and cultural environment. 

The programme is expected to provoke an inclusive, sensitive, and critical conversation on the deep embeddedness of the (mis)perceptions of Ukraine that are reproduced in the structures of global hierarchies and injustices. The overall objective of the programme, therefore, is to introduce and spread the understanding of the imperial narratives on Ukraine that are enforced by Russia through cultural practices and relations. By unveiling the hidden goals of Russian propaganda in culture, the Ukrainian Institute aims at strengthening the Ukrainian agency and increasing the visibility of Ukrainian art which is still often overlooked. 

The opening discussion titled How Russian War Against Ukraine Changed the [Art] World was launched in April. The autumn programme arranged in four modules (four long weekends) is a continuation of the started discussion. All events will take place in Venice with live streaming.

  • 2–4 September 2022. How Do We Decolonise Art?
  • 8–10 October 2022. Art as a Weapon and as a Target
  • 28–30 October 2022. Fallen Between the Cracks. Unknown Art Histories
  • 17–19 November 2022. Histories Behind the Pavilion. Decoloniality and Biennials

This first of the series of events within the programme is titled How Do We Decolonise Art? It will take place on 2–4 September. The language of the programme is English. 

2 September (all times CEST/UTC +2) 

15:00 Opening discussion: Russian War Against Ukraine, Decoloniality and Art. 

Screening: Myro Klochko and Andriy Bondarenko. Peace and Tranquility (11’) 

3 September (all times CEST/UTC +2)  

11:00 Key-note by Madina Tlostanova: Decoloniality: Between a Traveling Concept, a Propagandistic Cliche and a Relational Onto-epistemic Political, Ethical and Aesthetic Stance 

11:45 Discussion: How Do We Decolonise Art? 

15:00 Screening: Christian Nyampeta. Sometimes It Was Beautiful (38ʼ)

15:45 Discussion: Decolonising Art Institutions. 

4 September (all times CEST/UTC +2)  

11:00 Lecture by Kateryna Botanova: On European Orient: Ukrainian Twofold Decolonial War  

11:45 Closing discussion: Can Art Fix the Collapsed World? 

Screening: Misho Antadze. 3 Songs for Saturn (11ʼ)

Participants:

  • Madina Tlostanova, Professor of Postcolonial Feminisms at the Department of Thematic Studies (Gender studies) at Linköping University (Linköping, Sweden)
  • Vitaly Chernetsky, Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Kansas (Kansas, USA) 
  • Anna Lazar, Curator at the Museum of Art in Łódź (Łódź, Poland)
  • Kateryna Botanova, Cultural critic and Curator (Basel, Switzerland)
  • Maria Isserlis, Curator at Albertinum and Co-founder of A:D: (Dresden, Germany)
  • Alex Halberstadt, Senior Writer, Creative Team, MoMA (New York, USA)
  • Misho Antadze, Filmmaker and Artistic researcher (Tbilisi, Georgia) 
  • Angela Vettese, Associate Professor at Iuav University in Venice (Venice, Italy)
  • Jurriaan Cooiman, Director of CULTURESCAPES (Basel, Switzerland)
  • Tetyana Filevska, Creative Director of the Ukrainian institute (Kyiv, Ukraine)

Location: Teatro Piccolo Arsenale

CAMPO DELLA TANA, 2169/F

30122 VENEZIA

Programme will be streamed online on the Ukrainian Institute Facebook page.

The programme is an integral part of the Ukraine Pavilion exhibition project, supervised by the Commissioner Kateryna Chuyeva, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine and curated by Lizaveta German, Maria Lanko, Borys Filonenko and will be held in collaboration with the Ukrainian Institute, the participating artists and curators of other national pavilions. 

The project will target a wide audience of Biennale Arte 2022 visitors, accredited professionals, and media. 

Hosted by La Biennale di Venezia

Organised by

  • Ukrainian Pavilion
  • Ukrainian institute

Partners

  • Ukrainian Pavilion International Renaissance Foundation 
  • Ukrainian institute Platform for interdisciplinary practice Open Place