Organizers of the Malta Biennale, the first event of its kind to be held on the tiny Mediterranean archipelago, have revealed details of its inaugural edition. Curated by independent Italian curator Sofia Baldi Pighi and titled “Insulaphilia,” the biennial will take place March 11–May 31, 2024. The newly restored Grandmaster’s Palace in the capital city of Valletta will serve as the main exhibition venue, with eleven other historic sites scattered across the islands of Malta and Gozo hosting exhibitions. Austria, China, France, Germany, Italy, Malta, Palestine, Poland, Serbia, Spain, Turkey, and Ukraine have all committed to pavilions.

Seventy-two participating artists have been announced, a number of them young and emerging artists from Malta. Among the international participants are Calder Prize–winning Berlin-based sculptor and filmmaker Rosa Barba, who explores topics including the natural landscape and man-made interventions in the environment; Cuban activist and artist Tania Bruguera, who investigates issues of power and control through performance and installation; Golden Lion-winning Chilean poet and artist Cecilia Vicuña, who examines themes such as memory, exile, and extinction; and Italian collective Post Disaster, who stage informed conversations about urban topics on city rooftops.

“Insulaphilia” will be divided into four sections respectively exploring regional concerns, decolonization, political issues in the Mediterranean, and resistance. The biennial’s main theme is inspired by French philosopher Gilles Deleuze’s concept that islands contain “the intensity of the world itself.” Pighi in a statement promised that “Insulaphilia” would “investigate insular thinking,” noting that the biennial aims to show the island “not as a postcard utopia but as a delimitation that produces learning and encounters.”

A full list of participating artists and their nationalities is below:

Alan Abd El Monim (Italian/Egyptian)

Camilla Alberti (Italian)

Anna Anderegg (Swiss)

Teresa Antignani (Italian)

Jean-Marie Appriou (French)

Rosa Barba (Italian-German)

Simon Benjamin (Jamaican)

Laura Besançon (Maltese)

Aaron Bezzina (Maltese)

Rebecca Bonaci (Maltese)

Josian Bonello (Maltese)

Isabelle Borg (Maltese)

Claude Borg, Maria Borg, Sumaya Ben Saad, Rebecca Mifsud (Maltese)

Amy Bravo (American)

Tania Bruguera (Cuban)

Siwani Buhlebezwe (South African)

Teresa Busuttil (Australian)

Anna Calleja (Maltese)

Austin Camilleri (Maltese)

Edson Chagas (Angolan/Portuguese)

Mel Chin (Chinese-American)

Leo Chircop (Maltese)

Joseph Cochran II (American)

Andrea Conte (Andreco) (Italian)

Gaia De Megni (Italian)

Mònica de Miranda (Portuguese/Angolan)

Adama Delphine Fawundu (American)

Zehra Doğan (Kurdish)

Dolphin Club (Maltese, French)

Madeleine Fenwick (British)

Andrea Ferrero (Peruvian)

Martina Georgina, Romeo Roxman Gatt (Maltese)

Nina Gerada (Maltese)

Sara Goldschmied, Eleonora Chiari (Italian)

Bettina Hutschek (German)

Anne Immelé (French)

Daniel Jablonski (Brazilian)

Barbara Kapusta (Austrian)

Dew Kim (South Korean)

Konstantina Krikzoni (Greek)

Wioletta Kulewska Akyel (Polish)

Sara Leghissa (Italian)

Ji Yeon Yaloo Lim, Pia Borg (Korean, Maltese-Australian)

Luz Lizarazo (Colombian)

Edson Luli (Albanian)

Basim Magdy (Swiss/Egyptian)

Guadalupe Maravilla (El Salvadorian)

Jermay Michael Gabriel (Italian)

Karyn Olivier (American)

Zazzaro Otto (Italian)

Adrian Paci (Albanian

Post Disaster (Grazia Mappa, Gabriele Leo, Gabriella Mastrangelo, Peppe Frisino) (Italian)

Dijana Protić (Croatian)

Laure Prouvost (French)

Keit Bonnici, Florinda Camilleri, Neils Plotard (Maltese, Maltese, French)

Agnes Questionmark (Italian)

Anna Raimondo (Italian)

Pedro Reyes (Mexican)

Cemile Sahin (German)

Paul Sammut (British)

Zineb Sedira (French/Algerian)

Ana, Giuditta Shametaj, Vendrame (Italian/Albanian, Italian)

Anthony Spagnol (Maltese)

Tom Van Malderen (Belgian)

Fabrizio Vatieri (Italian)

Raphael Vella (Maltese)


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