Focus Week. Equipo artístico de Manifesta 15 Barcelona Metropolitana


Manifesta, the European nomadic biennial, has announced that Barcelona and its metropolitan area will host the activities of this proposal this year, its 15th anniversary: ​​it will take place over eighty days, from 8 September, and will deploy a multidisciplinary programme in spaces that have been considered significant in relation to the past, present and future of the Catalan capital and its surroundings. Eighty-five authors, both individuals and groups, will participate, exhibiting their creations in more than sixteen venues in twelve cities: this will be the largest Manifesta in terms of its geographical scope, at the request of the authorities of Barcelona and the eleven nearby towns that wanted to join this project.

The thematic background also called for a rethinking of the functions of areas outside the historic centre of a city like Barcelona, ​​and research into possible improvements in the relationship between the urbanised and natural environment of the metropolitan region, in this case rivers, mountains and the sea. Manifesta 15 therefore promises to investigate both the urban, environmental and political challenges inherent to this context and the way in which these challenges reflect those that impact communities, more or less similar, in other places in Europe or on other continents.

It is no coincidence that, in its fifteenth edition, or its thirtieth anniversary, Manifesta has decided to go beyond the conventional biennial model and focus on experimental methodologies: this revision has been possible by using its archives and the contributions made at the public assemblies that this initiative organised with the support of residents in Barcelona. It will analyse how, by reflecting on the social contract, we can articulate new ways of living in a more harmonious way with nature, and it will invite creators with very diverse experiences and knowledge, with backgrounds, to devise projects adapted to each place and artistic interventions based on time.

Manifesta 15 will structure its programming around three thematic and geographic blocks, located in three zones: Balancing conflicts (Llobregat delta), Caring and taking care of ourselves (Collserola mountain range and Vallès area) and Imagining futures (Besòs river and northeast coast). In parallel, the following will be organized: Focus Weeks or thematic weeks in each of these dozen participating cities, which will focus on them and on the part of the Biennale programme that will take place in them; to mark the start of each one, a mobile venue will be set up in the main square of the city in question, hosting accessible and informative events and activities, in collaboration with the local council. This mobile venue will be built with the involvement of students from the IAAC – Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia, and during these days it will become a cultural centre and community space open to local actors. A curated programme will run there and will be executed by artistic representatives of the host municipalities, placing culture at the forefront of metropolitan life this autumn in these places.

The Biennial will also invite visitors to take at least one of the Manifesta 15 tours, which will link important spaces in Catalan architecture and history, including several that have been inaccessible to the public until now, such as the Tres Chimeneas in Sant Adrià de Besòs or the Casa Gomis in El Prat de Llobregat. There we will find works by some of the artists in this exhibition, more than half of which are newly commissioned and others adapted for the occasion; in order to be more closely linked to the local scene, a third of these authors will be of local origin.

There will be more specialized itineraries, so that the public can orient their experience around the different themes that will be the backbone of the Biennial and with respect to their preferred means of transport; a range of mediation options is also being worked on in relation to the urban, environmental and political perspectives.

Tickets for Manifesta 15 Barcelona Metropolitana – that will be its full name – are now on sale online.


Artistic team of Manifesta 15 Barcelona Metropolitana

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