The first group of Canadian and international artists for the third edition of the Toronto Biennial of Art (the Biennial/TBA), which will take place from September 21 to December 1, 2024, was revealed today. The 72-day free event is curated by Dominique Fontaine and Miguel A. López and takes place at various locations throughout the city.
Dineo Seshee Bopape, Sonia Boyce, Charles Campbell, Raven Chacon, Naomi Rincón Gallardo, Maria Hupfield, Rudy Loewe, Tessa Mars, Pamila Matharu, Citra Sasmita, Karen Tam, Ahmed Umar, and Cecilia Vicuña are among the commissioned and invited artists who have so far taken part in TBA 2024 exhibitions.
TBA Founder and Executive Director Patrizia Libralato stated, “We are honored to share a glimpse into the curatorial process and direction for the 2024 exhibition as well as announce our preliminary list of participating Biennial artists—with more to come.” “Our curators, Miguel A. López and Dominique Fontaine, are putting artists and their voices front and center in every facet of their study, and they are doing so with rigor and attentive attention. With this strategy, the 2024 Biennial will be meaningful, significant, and open to everyone.”
“We are still dedicated to helping artists from all throughout Canada and beyond to exhibit their previous works and take on new assignments. Through the distinctive perspectives of artists, the Biennial will respond to local and global experiences in these ever more complex times. As we welcome audiences to the Biennial in the fall of 2024, our team is excited to present their viewpoints. Libralato expressed his gratitude to his partners and supporters for their unwavering support of art and artists, which enabled him to organize and present ten weeks of free art events and programming in Toronto.
In the spring of 2024, other participants will be revealed, along with information about the Biennial’s comprehensive public and educational programs and innovative partnerships.
“The 2024 Biennial aims to showcase the ways artists from different localities respond to the impact of the aftermath of colonialism on everyday life,” Fontaine and López said when discussing the curating process. When considering the framework of the Biennial, we have taken our cues from artists and been inspired and motivated by their approaches. This involves creating a draft list of important guidelines, such as “Joy,” “Home,” and “Solace,” derived from the artistic labor. With regard to pressing contemporary issues, such as environmental degradation, sovereignty, self-representation, belonging, collective memory, ancestral knowledge, migrant diasporas, queer futurity, and the role that art can play in mending strained social ties, the exhibition seeks to spark a conversation among viewers.
The 2024 Biennial will be accompanied by a new publication, modeled after the “Water, Kinship, Belief” publication made for the 2019 and 2022 Biennial exhibitions. Designed to revolve around dialogues among artists, curators, and additional participants, these talks elucidate the similarities and shared challenges that emerge among the various artistic disciplines showcased in the Biennial.
2024 Biennial Highlights
Artists participating in the 2024 Biennial exhibition include:
Dineo Seshee Bopape
Dineo Seshee Bopape, a resident of Johannesburg, South Africa, was born in Polokwane, South Africa. In order to think about how the social, political, and physical inhabit the world around us, Bopape investigates elemental, metaphysical, and socio-historical topics. Dreaming as a method to interact with reality will be the foundation of her TBA project, which she is working on in collaboration with The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery. Bopape will establish a connection with restorative Indigenous practices grounded in herbal medicinal traditions through collaboration with local communities. The Power Plant’s LePage Gallery will become an immersive environment combining video, sound, and organic materials thanks to this new site-specific installation.
Sonia Boyce OBE RA
Sonia Boyce OBE RA was born in London, United Kingdom, and she still resides and works there. Since 1990, Boyce has worked closely with other artists, placing a strong emphasis on collaborative work. Her collaborators’ work frequently involves improvisation and unplanned performative actions. In partnership with the Art Gallery of Ontario and PHI Foundation for Contemporary Art, Montréal, a site-specific rendition of Feeling Her Way (2022) will be showcased in May 2024. The installation, which debuted in Canada, features video, collage, music, and sculpture to showcase a body of work centered around the vocal experimentation of five female musicians. It was awarded the Golden Lion for Best National Participation at the 59th Venice Biennale.
Born in Jamaica, Charles Campbell (he/him) currently resides in Victoria, Canada. Through their work, artists bring life to the imagined futures left behind by colonization and slavery. Campbell’s sculpture installation project for TBA sees itself as a doorway into the area inhabited by the ghosts of those who perished in the Middle Passage. By offering a place of recognition, comfort, and care for those spirits, it will try to pave a way to futures obstructed by trauma and injustice.
Raven Chacon, a man who resides in Red Hook, New York, was born in Fort Defiance, Navajo Nation. Chacon is a 2023 MacArthur Fellow as well as a composer, performer, installation artist, and recipient of the Pulitzer Prize. In opposition to colonial narratives and myths of an uninhabited American West, his work investigates the range of sound. In Ontario, Chacon will produce a film for TBA that will be included in the upcoming Three Songs (2021–2024) video series, which honors Indigenous women singers of the past, present, and future.
Maria Hupfield, a resident of Tkarón:to/Toronto, Canada, was born in Parry Sound. The artist hails from Wasauksing First Nation (Huron Robinson Treaty), Ontario, and is an active member of the Anishinaabek Nation. Performance art and industrial felt are acknowledged to be combined in Hupfield’s transdisciplinary practice. Her inventive appearances in live performances, collaborative works, as sculptural arrangements, and videos fully actualize her creations and further activate and utilize them. Hupfield plans to develop the spiral’s form and sound in a new piece for TBA, building on the ideas presented in her 2015 piece Jingle Spiral.
Pamila Matharu (they/them), a resident of Tkarón:to/Toronto, was born in Birmingham, UK. Matharu employs an interdisciplinary and intersectional feminist lens, approaching contemporary art from the perspective of critical pedagogy. Their work frequently takes many different forms, such as experimental media art, social practice, and installation art. Through community-engaged ways of knowing, Matharu’s project will offer TBA a multidisciplinary platform that experientially intersects critical pedagogy and contemporary art practices.
Cecilia Vicuña, born in Santiago, Chile, divides her time between Santiago and New York. At the 59th Venice Biennale, Vicuña—a visual artist, poet, filmmaker, and activist—recently received the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement. To identify what disappears, she developed the independent notion of “precarious art” in Chile in the middle of the 1960s. In order to “hear an ancient silence waiting to be heard,” her work weaves together poetry and the arts. Vicuña is working on a research project for TBA that makes a connection between her battle against Chile’s military dictatorship (1973–1990) and the ongoing efforts to combat fake news and other forms of manipulation that threaten the legitimacy of democracy.
Preliminary List of Venues and Exhibition Partners
One of the main objectives of the Biennial is to establish creative alliances through joint installations, exhibitions, and programming in Toronto and elsewhere. In addition to traditional art institutions, the 2024 Biennial will collaborate with artist-run centers, community organizations, educational institutions, and repurposed spaces.
Art Gallery of Ontario, C Magazine, Gallery TPW, OCAD University, PHI Foundation for Contemporary Art, Textile Museum of Canada, The Image Centre (Toronto Metropolitan University), The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto District School Board, Toronto Sculpture Garden, Toronto Union, and the Urban Indigenous Education Centre are some of the organizations that are involved in exhibitions and programming. We will be announcing more partners in the upcoming months.
TBA Founders and Funders
The generous support of all contributing donors is greatly appreciated by the Toronto Biennial of Art. The Zeidler family, Cadillac Fairview, Chromatic Developments, Hatch, Max Mara, Michael & Sonja Koerner Charitable Foundation, Michelle Koerner Family Foundation, Power Corporation, Alfredo & Moira Romano, Sabourin Family Foundation, TD Bank Group, Woodbridge Investments Corporation, Women Leading Initiative, and numerous kind individual donors, including our founding supporters, have all contributed significantly to the cause thus far. TBA is also appreciative of the City of Toronto and the Canada Council for the Arts, two government agencies.
Travel companions and hosts have provided invaluable support to TBA during the curatorial research process. The Polygon Gallery in Vancouver, Jan van Eyck Academy in Maastricht, The Netherlands; Office of Contemporary Art Norway in Oslo; PHI Foundation for Contemporary Art, Montréal; Artspeak Gallery in Vancouver; Frame Contemporary Art Finland in Helsinki; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin; and Remai Modern in Saskatoon are a few of these supporters.
About the Toronto Biennial of Art
The goal of the Toronto Biennial of Art is to make modern art available to all. The Biennial, a ten-week event held every two years, commissions artists to produce original works for a citywide exhibition that engages with the various local contexts of Toronto. Public and educational programs offered all year long connect Biennial editions and encourage audiences of all ages to investigate the concepts that serve as the basis for our events. Every Biennial connects people to spark meaningful conversations and envision new futures by building on previous editions and providing fresh perspectives and modes of hearing.
Visit torontobiennial.org, @torontobiennial, and on Facebook and Instagram for additional information.