2nd General Assembly & conversations of the IBA (International Biennial Association)

Sharjah Institute for Theatrical Arts Al Mareija, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
04 Mar 2015 - 07 Mar 2015

2nd General Assembly & conversations of the IBA (International Biennial Association)

The International Biennial Association (IBA) is pleased to announce its 2nd General Assembly will be held in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, from March 4 to 7, 2015. The event will open with a public program at the Sharjah Institute for Theatrical Arts, which will consist of a keynote lecture, a conversation between two biennial makers and presentations.

The program will bring together artists, critics, patrons, curators, historians and directors who influence development within the world of perennial art exhibitions. It will be a time to exchange knowledge and information, as well as foster new relationships between biennials as a platform for communication and participation.

The concept of the meeting focuses on the creative structure of periodic events and its social practice that challenges space and time in contemporary art. The fact that artists and curators move continuously amongst biennials and festivals has created an alternative, cross-national and intangible space where discursive voices can be heard and shared.

Notions of cosmopolitanism and transnationalism have been rendered ever more visible in the realm of contemporary art and its practices, with international biennials at its heart. The form has already reached some 280 iterations as biennials widespread and decentralized across different corners of the globe, and has marked a shift in cultural production and consumption from a framework of dense cultural centers to a multiplicity of cultural networks. As a result, contemporary art across the world, increasingly, exists in the gap between multiple cultural influences and zones of exchange.


Wednesday, March 4
Welcome dinner: IBA members only

Thursday, March 5: Open to public
Sharjah Biennial 12 official opening
Keynote lecture
Conversation with biennial makers

Friday, March 6: IBA members only
3rd Board Meeting
Opening words from President Yongwoo Lee
Welcoming words from Sheikha Hoor Al Qasimi
Introduction to new members
IBA general report
Appreciation banquet

Saturday, March 7
Full-day tour to Kalba for Sharjah Biennial 12

*Please RSVP for the public program to,
and the member-only events to

The 2nd General Assembly and Conversations are hosted and generously supported by the Sharjah Art Foundation. The public program was organized with the collaboration of Tarek Abou El Fetouh.


Join the IBA

To become a member in the network of art professionals and take part in the General Assembly, apply online through the IBA website.

The International Biennial Association (IBA) is a nonprofit arts association composed of institutions, individuals and associates from the biennial community and arts-related industry. It was created to expand and share activities of curatorial, artistic creation and knowledge production through cooperation and exchange among biennials and other institutions.

Executive Board 

President Yongwoo Lee
Vice President Bige Örer (Istanbul Biennial)
Vice President Marieke van Hal (Biennial Foundation)

Board Members
Sheikha Hoor Al-Qasimi (Sharjah Biennial) / Elke aus dem Moore (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen) / Margarita González (Havana Biennial) / Gabriele Horn (Berlin Biennale) / Hong-Hee Kim (MediaCity Seoul) / Helena Kontova (Prague Biennale) / Patrick Mudekereza (Lubumbashi Biennale) / Eriko Osaka (Yokohama Triennale) / Mauro Petroni (Dakar Biennale) / Alya Sebti (Marrakech Biennale) / Alia Swastika (Jogja Biennale) / Sally Tallant (Liverpool Biennial) / Tan Boon Hui (National Heritage Board, Singapore) / Zhang Qing (International Biennial Research Center, China)

*List above is in alphabetical order


The Sharjah Art Foundation brings a broad range of contemporary art and cultural programs to the communities of Sharjah, the UAE and the region. Since 2009 SAF has built on the history of cultural collaboration and exchange that began with the first Sharjah Biennial in 1993. The core initiatives of the foundation include the Sharjah Biennial, the annual March Meeting, artist residencies, production grants, commissions, exhibitions, research, publications and a growing collection. Our education and public programs focus on building recognition of the central role art can play in the life of a community by promoting public learning and a participatory approach to art. The 12th edition of the Sharjah biennial is curated by Eungie Joo and will open on 5 March.

For all inquiries, please contact


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