[December 7 2016]
The XIII Bienal de Cuenca, Impermanencia, proposes to bring together a geographically and stylistically diverse group of artists who share an interest in mirroring the frailties and follies of human existence relative to our fundamentally fleeting existence. In doing so, the exhibition recognizes that the challenges of art-making, as compared to some of the greater obstacles in human existence, might seem minor and trivial for those not aware of its high stakes, in much the way that our species likely appears insignificant when measured against the entirety of the surrounding cosmos. And yet we make and appreciate art for deep, primordial, which sometimes includes the wish to have one’s name spoken long after one is no longer alive, but perhaps it is the art of the ineffable, the defenseless, and the transitory that speaks most eloquently to our condition as temporary, transient packets of gradually dispersing energy inside a cold, ever-expanding universe. In its emphasis on the viewer’s internal responsiveness to the works on view, the 13th Bienal de Cuenca also subtly challenges certain preconditions of ownership with respect to works of art, which in the final analysis are more the patrimony of all humankind than a single museum, state, or individual.
Photo Vicente Muñoz