Delhi State Food Supplies Minister Shri Imran Hussain together with a high profile government delegation visited Aspinwall House, the primary venue for Kochi-Muziris Biennale (KMB) 2016, on Friday.Speaking after a guided tour by KMB co-founder Bose Krishnamachari, the minister said he had no words for his experience at India’s only Biennale. “Like the Biennale, Kochi has been fascinating. I am sure that it is qualified to be called the ‘art capital’ of Kerala,” he said.
Somnath Bharati MLA was part of the delegation. He pointed that the Biennale is a fusion of art, spirituality, philosophy and science. “There is creativity all around here that takes human beings to another world. Such exhibitions are unique. These creations should be taken to Delhi to free the national capital from crimes,” he said.
Sally Tallant has been a regular at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale (KMB) since the first edition. During a visit to KMB 2016 on Friday, the Liverpool Biennial director said there were similarities, and opportunities for collaboration, between the two art galas.“I am amazed at how this Biennale has inspired and influenced the infrastructure in Kochi. It has rejuvenated the cityscape and been embraced and owned by the people here,” Tallant said.
Noting that the ways both Biennales use their respective cities to narrate their stories, Tallant said, “We work together with artists to take people on an artistic journey out of the museums and into the city. Architecture is a teacher that teaches the histories of a place. We try to do something similar in Liverpool. One of the things we can learn from the Biennale is how we can do things at the right scale of place – so that people don’t have to travel too far.”
Tallant said the diverse portfolio of art education and outreach initiatives at the Kochi Biennale Foundation could be avenues for working together. “I am happy we are working in partnership with the KBF to exchange staff and learn from one another about how a Biennale can operate in a place,” she said.
“I especially love the this idea of art education and engagement underpinning the Biennale and how the Students’ Biennale and Art by Children exhibition have been integrated into the larger festival. Perhaps together we can develop strategies on working with schools, even build relationships between schools here and in Liverpool,” she said.
The ninth edition of the Liverpool Biennial – the biggest contemporary art festival in the UK – was held earlier this year.On the outlook for KMB 2016, Tallant said she continued to be impressed with how the city and its people had taken ownership of the art gala. “I am happy to see it continue to grow,” she said.