Bodhgaya Biennale 2021
Bodhgaya Biennale 2020 has been rescheduled for November-December 2021,
due to the Covid 19 Coronavirus pandemic.
Futures at the Tipping point: In the Face of Inequalities
“Futures at the Tipping Point: In the Face of Inequalities.”
Equality in all beings, this is the sign of the free I For this iteration of the Bodhgaya Biennale, we are bringing together artists of the last hundred years to tell stories of the ways humanity continues to struggle towards betterment—thinking of and envisioning ways to uphold equality as a principal that organizes all people, regardless of race, gender, sexuality, religion and creed.
For this iteration of the Bodhgaya Biennale, we are bringing together artists of the last hundred years to tell stories of the ways humanity continues to struggle towards betterment—thinking of and envisioning ways to uphold equality as a principal that organizes all people, regardless of race, gender, sexuality, religion and creed.
We are living through turbulent times that echo the horrors of the past. Artists have always been at the forefront, able through close observation to notice the ways people behave with beauty and dignity, and artists also are attuned to seeing, recording and theorizing the ways people degrade and exploit each other, animals and the earth. For this Biennale we want to emphasize the poetic capacities of artists who can point out inequity so that we have a place to work from, to improve upon. The artists in this major, international exhibition behave as our eyes, ears, hearts, minds and hands—They show us the ways hands are able to make change.
The location in itself is a magical, powerful spiritual platform for all. Bodhgaya is a pilgrimage site for Buddhists from all over the world. A true crossroads based on a shared, global desire for peace and mutual respect and love. I believe artists from all over the world will find inspiration from the cultural and historical value of Bodhgaya and find it a powerful place to stage conversations about art that address inequality.
The glorious history of the state of Bihar and the city of Bodhagay provides a right platform for thinkers and artists to bring social concerns to express. The region boasts a long history as an intellectual and research epicenter. Buddhists universities including Nalanda and Udantpuri and Vikramshila existed in the state of Bihar. They thrived for almost eight hundred years. Fading from view after invading armies destroyed their campuses, libraries and labs. These monasteries were centers for studying philosophy, Buddhism, mathematics and sciences. Nine hundred years later, now, a pan-Asian consortium is working to review these centers of learning, again in service to the betterment of the world, all humanity, across nations.
These international efforts are critical to expand the ways we define equality. Until now, I had the sense that I understood the scope of the diﬃculties, the extreme inequalities that organize people into groups. As I research the subject in service to building an artist list, every day I learn more that frightens and sadness me. The state of division, inequity and exploitation is insidious and more extreme than I had understood. We have a lot of work to do, and for me, my sector is the art world. I am an artist and now a curator, and always a storyteller. Together with my team, the artists, and the people of Bodhgaya and the state of Bihar – we are hoping to present 100 artists at different sites—each gifting visitors and viewers will get a chance to re-think how they feel about different forms of art and our futures.
The world is full of inequalities. There is gender inequality, race/cast inequality, religious inequality and economic inequality. Through art we will think about the impacts of these conditions on real people and their daily lives.
Over the course of the next six months, the Biennale will announce artists who will join us to launch this exhibition that promises to shine light on the most pressing issues of our time to craft a broad and deep understanding of some of the issues that plague humanity.
I’m very happy to announce a selection of artists today who have showed high interest to participate. They reflect my longstanding commitment to artists who are brave, working according to terms and creating forms that they believe in deeply—regardless of the market. These artists reflect my commitment to acknowledging the role of art in many fields, from fashion to education.
Anindita Dutta I Curator
Dialogue . 1
Guest of Honor
IAS, Principal Secretary to CM, Bihar
Anindita Dutta I Chief Curator I Bodhgaya Biennale
Madhavan Pillai I Noted Photographer, Co-Curator I Bodhgaya Biennale
Vinay Kumar I Writer on arts
Co-Curator I Bodhgaya Biennale
Seema Kohli I Noted artist
Ravi Agrawal I Eminent artist
Guest of Honor’s note
Anindita Dutta I Curator