José Roca - Essays in Geopoetics: the notion of territory critically redefined from the perspective of artistic practice.

José Roca - Essays in Geopoetics: the notion of territory critically redefined from the perspective of artistic practice.

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José Roca (Barranquilla, 1962) is a Colombian curator working out of Bogotá and Philadelphia. For a decade he managed the arts program at the Banco de la República in Bogotá, establishing it as one of the most respected institutions in the Latin American circuit. Roca was a co-curator of the I Poly/graphic Triennial in San Juan, Puerto Rico (2004); the 27th Bienal de São Paulo, Brazil (2006); the Encuentro de Medellín MDE07 (2007); and of the Bienal de Arte Paiz in Guatemala (2010), and was the Artistic Director of Philagrafika 2010, Philadelphia’s international Triennial celebrating print in contemporary art, among many other exhibitions and events. Roca served on the awards jury for the 52nd Venice Biennial (2007). He is currently chief curator of the 8 Bienal do Mercosul, scheduled to open in September 2011 in Porto Alegre, Brazil.

Essays on Geopoetics: the 8 Mercosul Biennial
The curatorial project for the 8th iteration of the Mercosul biennial, which takes place in Porto Alegre, Brazil, departed from simple questions: is it possible to conceive a large art biennial in which the model is not primarily exhibitionary? Can or should a biennial create or consolidate local infrastructure? Who is the real public for a third-world biennial? Using the notion of nation both as a thematic framework and as a strategy for curatorial action, the project aimed to answer through seven distinct components. Reflecting on territory and its critical redefinition from an artistic viewpoint, the 8th Biennial wanted to show alternatives to the conventional idea of nation and discuss activist cartographies, the relationships between political and geographical conditions, routes of circulation and exchange of symbolic capital, citizenship in non-urban areas, the political status of fictional nations and the relationship between art, travel and colonisation.

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Asbury, Michael
Tatchell, Nick


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