Indian artist Anita Dube has been named the curator for the fourth edition of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, opening December 2018. The announcement was made at the closing ceremony of the 2016 edition, on 29 March in Kochi. Dube was selected by a panel consisting of artists Velu Viswanadhan, Dayanita Singh and Ravi Agarwal, the academic and writer Kavita Singh, cultural journalist and curator Sadanand Menon, writer and curator Sarat Maharaj and Kochi Biennale Foundation trustees V Sunil, Riyas Komu and Bose Krishnamachari. Komu and Krishnamachari are co-founders of the Biennale and curated its inaugural edition in 2012.
Dube takes over from Sudarshan Shetty, whose curatorship of the third edition of India’s only Biennale drew over 600,000 visitors to the event. An art historian and critic by training, Dube’s politically-charged works have been widely exhibited, including at the first Kochi-Muziris Biennale. Her practice uses objects and industrial materials, performance and text to critique contemporary socio-political realities.
Describing Dube as a "thinking artist,” Krishnamachari said, “Anita’s sensitivity towards materials, incorporating everyday objects derived from informal, craft and industrial sources and spaces, is profound. As is her wordplay and use of media, gestures and imagery all of which will make for varied experiences and resonances in a space as adaptive and accommodating as the Biennale. Her oeuvre features both knowledgeable consideration and skilful melding of the sensibilities and styles of abstractions with real, contemporary concerns. This will doubtless be reflected in her curatorial vision.”
Komu added that “Anita’s selection not only reinforces our commitment to having artists at the helm, but also our mission to address contemporary social-political-cultural concerns. Anita is a strong proponent of making art accessible to the public through effective political and social engagement. This is precisely what the Biennale tries to do.”
3 April 2017