Here Are the Artists and Collectives Participating in Belgium’s Contour Biennale 8

The biennale will take over the city of Mechelen, Belgium.

Basir Mahmood. Monument of arrival and return(still), 2016. Video. Commissioned and co-produced by Contour Biennale 8, courtesy of the artist.

Contour, also known as the Biennial of Moving Image staged in Mechelen, Belgium, has announced the 26 artists and collectives due to participate in its eighth edition, which is slated to open on March 10, 2017 and run through late May.

Curated by Natasha Ginwala—who serves as an advisor for documenta 14 and organized My East is Your West at the 56th Venice Biennale—Contour Biennale 8, titled “Polyphonic Worlds: Justice as Medium,” will take place in a number of venues across the city of Mechelen, and intends to, according to the press release, “question the preconceived boundaries between the perception of legality and illegality within today’s experience of statehood.”

The list is a fairly mixed bag, including emerging artists—such as Adelita Husni-Bey or Pedro Gómez-Egaña—alongside more heavy-hitters like Trevor Paglen or Rossella Biscotti. Others are seemingly on the rise: Lawrence Abu-Hamdan has recently won the prestigious Num June Paik award, Eric Baudelaire’s work will be presented in a solo exhibition at Witte de With in Rotterdam next year, and Beatriz Santiago Muñoz recently completed a residency resulting in a one-person presentation at New York’s New Museum.

Four of the 26 participants are collectives—a substantial amount, given the numbers. Agency, Council, Inhabitants, and Karrabing Film Collective will all debut newly-commissioned works for the biennial.

“Through artistic projects that excavate colonial legacy, ecological crises and build experimental cinematic encounters, Contour Biennale 8 considers how to survey the field of social justice and its implements as media archaeology,” the press release states. “Such that justice itself is considered a ‘medium’ that is simultaneously a performative, ethical and aesthetic operation.”

The full list of artists and collectives follows:

Adelita Husni-Bey


Ana Torfs

Arvo Leo

Basir Mahmood

Beatriz Santiago Muñoz

Council (Grégory Castéra and Sandra Terdjman)

Eric Baudelaire

Filipa César and Louis Henderson

Ho Tzu Nyen

Inhabitants (Mariana Silva and Pedro Neves Marques)

Judy Radul

Karrabing Film Collective

Lawrence Abu Hamdan

Madonna Staunton

Otobong Nkanga

Pallavi Paul

Pedro Gómez-Egaña

Rana Hamadeh,

Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam

Rossella Biscotti

Susanne M. Winterling

Trevor Paglen

Trinh Thi Nguyen

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