Artist Anita Dube Appointed Curator of 2018 Kochi-Muziris Biennale

Over 600,000 visitors attended the 2016 edition of India’s only art biennial.

Artist and 2018 Kochi-Muziris Biennale curator Anita Dube. Photo Lakshman, courtesy Kochi-Muziris Biennale.

The Indian artist Anita Dube has been appointed curator of the fourth edition of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale (KMB), slated to open in December 2018.

The announcement—in keeping with the KMB’s ethos of being helmed by an artist—was made at the closing ceremony of KMB 2016 on March 29 in Kochi.

Dube is taking over from Sudarshan Shetty, who curated a successful third edition of KMB that garnered positive reviews and attracted over 600,000 visitors.

“Through three editions, KMB has gained a reputation for being one of the most important exhibitions of its kind around the world. It is an honor and a very big challenge to be declared curator of this wonderful platform. I am delighted that the jurors thought I can deliver,” said Dube after the announcement.

“I accept the responsibility with excitement and humility. It is early days yet and my thoughts will no doubt undergo several changes going forward, but I view this as an opportunity to do something special,” she added.

In her work, Dube—a visual and performance artist with an academic background in art history—uses objects, industrial materials, performance, and text to explore socio-political issues.

She was a member of the Indian Radical Painters and Sculptors Association—a short-lived yet influential collective of artists who challenged the commodification of art in India.

Dube exhibited in the KMB’s first edition in 2012. She also participated in the well-known exhibition “Indian Highway” curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist, Julia Peyton-Jones, and Gunnar B. Kvaran at London’s Serpentine Gallery in 2008.

“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,” said Riyas Komu, secretary of the Kochi Biennale Foundation.

“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,” Komu added.

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