Jumana Emil Abboud (Palestine/England), Dineo Seshee Bopape (South Africa), Boral River (Bangladesh), Carolina Caycedo (Colombia/USA), Erin Coates (Australia), Cian Dayrit (Philippines), Jessie French (Australia), Joey Holder (England), Pushpa Kumari (India), Latent Community (Albania/Greece), Martuwarra River (Australia), National Committee of the Friends of Myall Creek Memorial and local First Nations Communities (on Gamilaroi/Gamilarray/Gomeroi Country, Australia), Wura-Natasha Ogunji (Nigeria/USA), Duke Riley (USA), and Teho Ropeyarn (Angkamuthi/Yadhaykana, Australia)
23rd Biennale of Sydney Curatorium
José Roca, Artistic Director; Paschal Daantos Berry (Head of Learning and Participation, Art Gallery of New South Wales); Anna Davis (Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia); Hannah Donnelly (Producer, First Nations Programs, Information + Cultural Exchange) and Talia Linz (Curator, Artspace)
12 March–13 June 2022
Open daily 10am–5pm
with extended hours every Thursday 6–10 pm
Good Friday 15 April: CLOSED
Easter Saturday 16 April : 10am–5pm
Easter Sunday 17 April: CLOSED
Easter Monday 18 April: 10am–5pm
23rd Biennale of Sydney Artists' Party
Join us to celebrate the opening of the 23rd Biennale of Sydney presented by National Art School in partnership with Artspace.
When | Tuesday, 8 March, 6–10pm
Where | National Art School, 156 Forbes St, Darlinghurst, NSW, 2010
For more information about the Biennale participants, programs and other venues, visit the Biennale of Sydney website.
Rivers, wetlands and other salt and freshwater ecosystems feature in the 23rd Biennale of Sydney (2022), titled rīvus, as dynamic living systems with varying degrees of political agency. Rivers are the sediment of culture. They are givers of life, routes of communication and places of ritual, but also sewers and mass graves. They are witnesses and archives, our memory. They have also been co-opted as natural avenues for the colonial enterprise, becoming sites of violent conflict driven by greed, exploitation and the thirst to possess. Indeed, the Latin root rīvus, meaning a brook or stream, is also at the origin of the word ‘rivalry’.
Indigenous knowledges have long understood non-human entities as living ancestral beings with a right to life that must be protected. But only recently have animals, plants, mountains and bodies of water been granted legal personhood. If we could recognise them as individual beings, what might they say?
rīvus, presented at National Art School (NAS) in partnership with Artspace, is imagined as a subterranean river once buried that now resurfaces. Across three buildings participants explore displacement, erasure, impeded flows and stagnant waters. They guide us through submarine universes, both real and imagined. Language, song and storytelling are used to connect to the spirits of the land and waters. Marks made by the body call forth watery beings from the past and the future. On this fraught site, the deep well of history can no longer be contained and the desire for healing and reclamation are brought to the fore.
The presentation of Carolina Caycedo and Wura-Natasha Ogunji at the 23rd Biennale of Sydney: rīvus was made possible with the generous support of Andrew Cameron AM and Cathy Cameron.