BIENALSUR and Universidad Nacional of Tres de Febrero, in collaboration with Fundación Foro del Sur, present a publication containing the discussions of the first three Online sessions towards BIENALSUR 2021, convened under the slogan Thinking possible futures.
Since its inception in 2015, BIENALSUR was designed as a project that goes beyond limits, in which art and culture are contemporaneously framed. A project aimed at contributing to the construction of citizenship by promoting the exercise of the right to culture while expressing the need to democratize the access to it.
Within this framework, given the current situation in the world and the logical concern for the health aspect, we thought about what to do and how to continue, and we discovered that everything we had considered at the time of the creation of the BIENALSUR project, was not only still in force but that it was increasingly necessary to reaffirm it. Amidst the uncertainty of this moment, how to consider its continuity? For those of us dwelling in the orbit of culture, the question is how to think or imagine an intervention. How do we keep advocating for a contemporary humanism in this new world scenario? These key questions are not far from the line of work that we have been carrying out; however, in this crisis, they have acquired an urgent status: that of highlighting those observations and considerations we have been making on the contemporary art scene to thus rethink it and be in a position to contribute to the exchange of problem-identifying processes and workable ways to think possible futures.
Considering that due to circumstances of lockdown it was not viable to continue with the Global South face-to-face meetings with participants from the five continents, we proposed to start a series of virtual Meetings towards BIENALSUR 2021 that would analyze the situation of pandemic days and of a practically global quarantine from different angles, expressing opinions coming from the fields of art, culture, and management. Dialogue is one of reasons why BIENALSUR exists. As a polyphonic space under (continuous) construction, we call on artists, curators, museum directors and different actors of the art-cultural scene with the purpose of constructing together reflections on the "state of things" in this specific area, sharing projects, imagining joint strategies, in short: building community in diversity.
We believe in dialogue because it offers positions that assume their temporariness in the attentive listening to the voice of the others that are affirmed or redefined during the exchange: dialogue admits the contrast between different voices and allows us to see the ways in which these complement each other. We choose this unstable open format because we prefer to raise the degree of entropy, adding voices in order to reflect, in present continuous, on possible futures. But why publish dialogues? To thus build archives of this present moment for the future.
Towards BIENALSUR 2021 - Thinking possible futures will bring together the discussions from the first three Online sessions held in May and June 2020, presented under the headings: State of affairs, the first, Imagination, ways of seeing, perspectives, the second, and Narratives of the Present, the third, will soon be available for download free of charge.