4th Berlin Biennial


The 4th berlin biennial for contemporary art is not only a singular exhibition: It is a series of events, incursions and gestures.


The first incursion, begun in March 2005, takes the form of a column in the Berlin based magazine Zitty, in which every two weeks the curators have been interviewing artists working in Berlin. In September 2005, the 4th berlin biennial opened Gagosian Gallery, Berlin, a guerrilla franchise that presents a new exhibition every four weeks. A new show titled "The Gone Wait" and curated by Berlin artist Tobias Buche, opens today, November 28, 2006, at 7 pm at Gagosian Gallery, Berlin, Auguststrasse 50A, D-10117 Berlin; the show continues through December 31, 2005.

The three curators, Maurizio Cattelan, Massimiliano Gioni, and Ali Subotnick, also contributed a diary detailing their experiences as newcomers in Berlin, to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung.

The latest effort of the 4th berlin biennial takes the form of a publication, Checkpoint Charley, which features images and materials from over 700 artists encountered by the curators during their research. Checkpoint Charley is the memory stick of the 4th berlin biennial: it is an excessive information tool and an attempt to capture the ever-expanding output of today’s art scene.

With Zitty, Gagosian Gallery, Berlin, and Checkpoint Charley, the 4th berlin biennial configures itself as an octopus-like creature, each tentacle reaching out in a different direction. One exhibition is no longer enough to describe a moment in time; instead the 4th berlin biennial operates as a series of satellites, all equally important, independent and yet complementary.

With this insatiable attitude, the 4th berlin biennial aims to reflect the exciting diversity of the art scene in Berlin, while also trying to grasp the radical variety of contemporary art on an international scale. Seen in this context, the exhibition of the 4th berlin biennial – which opens on March 25, 2006 – follows suit as another endeavor, complete unto itself, but gathering its energy from all the preceding events.


Titled “Of Mice and Men”, the exhibition will bring together art works that deal with a looming sense of loss, a threatening atmosphere of personal insecurity and collective anxiety.

In order to reflect these atmospheres, "Of Mice and Men" will not only take place in museum settings and white cubes; instead, the exhibition will unravel along one street, Auguststrasse, in Berlin&8217;s historic Mitte district, presenting art in unconventional spaces and charged environments. Besides the institutional settings of the KW Institute for Contemporary Art, the venues for the 4th berlin biennial will vary from private apartments to deserted buildings, offices, churches and schools, occupying and connecting sites that symbolically reflect the places where we live our everyday lives and consume our daily defeats.

The exhibition, "Of Mice and Men" will include more than 60 artists spanning four generations and working in a variety of media and techniques. Unlike the prevailing biennial tendency to debut the latest talents and movements, this show draws connections across time and throughout the past and present.

Non final list of participating artists (as of November 28, 2005)

Tomma Abts, Pawel Althamer, Kai Althoff and Lutz Braun, Ulf Aminde, Micol Assaël, Roger Ballen, Michael Beutler, Michaël Borremans, Tobias Buche, Anthony Burdin, Mircea Cantor, Bruce Conner, Benjamin Cottam, Martin Creed, Oliver Croy with Oliver Elser, Roberto Cuoghi, Tacita Dean, Jeremy Deller, Nathalie Djurberg, Trisha Donnelly, Saul Fletcher, Roland Flexner, Felix Gmelin, Aneta Grzeszykowska, Sebastian Hammwöhner / Dani Jakob / Gabriel Vormstein, Sergej Jensen, Dorota Jurczak, Ian Kiaer, Christopher Knowles, Robert KuSmirowski, Mark Leckey, Ján Mancuska, Mike Mandel & Larry Sultan, Mark Manders, Kris Martin, Matthew Monahan, Bruce Nauman, Damián Ortega, Diego Perrone, Jorge Queiroz, Reynold Reynolds with Patrick Jolley, Ricarda Roggan, Aïda Ruilova, Anri Sala, Michael Schmidt, Thomas Schütte, Norbert Schwontkowski, Tino Sehgal, Shirana Shahbazi, Florian Slotawa, Marcel van Eeden, Erik van Lieshout, Paloma Varga Weisz, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Andro Wekua, Cathy Wilkes.


The 4th berlin biennial for contemporary art is funded by the German Federal Cultural Foundation.
The Gagosian Gallery, Berlin, is realized with the support of the Culture 2000 programme of the European Union.
The ifa – Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen, Stuttgart/Rave-Stiftung supports the
4th berlin biennial with two Rave-scholarships for foreign curators.

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