Participating in the
Kathmandu Triennale, Kathmandu, Nepal
Kathmandu Triennale 2077
Artistic Director: Cosmin Costinas
Curators: Sheelasha Rajbhandari and Hit Man Gurung
On the occasion of Kathmandu Triennale 2077, Mohamed Bourouissa presents works from his Périphérique series, a hybrid of documentation and formal composition staged with the help of friends and acquaintances in the banlieues (suburbs) of Paris, where the artist grew up. Invoking the imagery of widely recognized works from art history—referencing a range of artists from Eugène Delacroix to Jeff Wall—the artist deliberately positions and gives agency to those who have, actively or otherwise, been written out of foundational national histories, particularly in France. Confrontations, gatherings, incidents, eye-lines, and frozen gestures all suggest a palpably dramatic tension, as if to capture a moment on the brink. The series, which began the same year as the violent banlieue riots of 2005, has carried with it the added weight of mirroring fraught socio-cultural issues.
About the Kathmandu Triennale
Kathmandu Triennale 2077, organized by the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation in Nepal and Siddhartha Arts Foundation, will be the largest and most ambitious artistic project staged in the country to date, becoming a key event for contemporary arts in Nepal even beyond the exhibition’s duration. The Triennale will exhibit works by over 100 artists and collaborators from more than 40 nations. An international symposium and performance program will also be held during the opening week.
2077 is for the Triennale both a cemented, stagnant time and a fluid, unpredictable variant. The curatorial team have retained this spectral title for the upcoming edition, first adopted in a shift of perspective towards the Triennale’s locality: 2077 in the Nepali Bikram Sambat calendar was 2020 in the Gregorian calendar, the original year for this edition. As the repeated postponement, dark periods of uncertainty, as well as new reflections and possibilities—all ripple effects of that ill-fated year—have inextricably shaped this project, acknowledging it is an act of humility and honesty towards this journey. All the while, the time of the Triennale has also become arbitrary and nonlinear; at once in the past and the future of 2077, and the present of 2022, mediating between systems of counting time, uneasy synchronicities, and struggles to escape and reclaim histories, often running afoul of each other. These multiplicities and displacements across time are reflected in the themes and artists of the Triennale, driven by the active and subversive perspectives and artistic languages of many communities within Nepal and around the world, often relegated from the colonially derived canons of contemporary art.
Kathmandu Triennale 2077 will launch with an online-only program, accessible February 11–28. All exhibition venues will be open to visitors March 1–31.