The Kochi Muziris Biennale is much more than just an art exhibition – it is a study on the human condition in an evolving world.
The Kochi-Muziris Biennale is the largest art exhibition in India and the biggest contemporary art festival in Asia. It is an initiative of the Kochi Biennale Foundation, and is supported by the Government of Kerala. A noteworthy fact about this exhibition is that it never has a fixed venue: it is setup in spaces across the city of Kochi. Till date, it has been held in halls, galleries, public spaces, heritage buildings and abandoned urban structures.
One can find Indian and international artists exhibiting their artworks across myriad mediums here, spanning visual and performance art, from films to paintings, installations to sculpture. Along with the exhibition, the Biennale also offers a smorgasbord of talks, screenings, and workshops for students of all ages. The exhibition starts in December and ends in March.
More than 6 lakh visitors attended the 2018 edition, and many more are expected in 2019. If you plan to visit, then do make sure that you plan your travel and stay arrangements beforehand. Here’s a pro tip: the Delhi Kochi flights are usually the most heavily booked, so book your ticket as early as you can.
Here are 3 awesome reasons why you should be at Kochi this month:
The exhibition itself
‘Possibilities for a non-alienated life’ is the title and theme of this year’s Biennale. It is curated by revered contemporary artist Anita Dube, and will be held across several venues such as Pepper House, David Hall, Aspinwall House, Cabral Yard, and Kasi Art Cafe among others. This is one of the objectives of the organisation, to link the promotion of local art and culture with the conservation of heritage properties and monuments. The organisation has arranged for free public tours and reserved guided walks. The footfall has seen a rise in recent years, and it is suggested that you book your Delhi Kochi flights as early as you can.
It is a film showcase that runs parallel to the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, featuring incredible art films, incisive documentaries and avant-garde feature films from across the world. The showcase is curated by eminent film-makers and scholars. The previous editions of Artists’ Cinema were very well received, with over 160 films screened over 100 days.
Let’s Talk is a public conversation forum where the focus is purely on art and cultural practices. Although it runs throughout the year, it picks up enormously during the Biennale. More than 40 riveting talks and conferences are organised, with modern day thinkers, artists, and scholars gracing the platform.
These are just a few of the many events that you can participate in at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale. But as mentioned above, this is an extremely popular event and people from all over the world flock to Kochi. It would be wise to pre-book the travel and accommodation, as well as the tickets to the Biennale. Mumbai to Kochi and the Delhi Kochi flights are usually the most sought after.
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