Once, the world’s post descended on Copperas Hill’s sorting office (behind Lime Street station). Now the world’s greatest cities are sending their artists up to the top of town. Don’t let them return to sender before checking out their packages. The Biennial tells us what to expect.

What’s Happening?

Liverpool Biennial’s City States strand took over the CUC last time around, and was, for our money, one of the best things in it (anyone remember that huge looping reel of film, suspended in mid air? Amazing.) This globe-spanning fest within a fest is a collaboration between the Biennial and embassies, international agencies or galleries.

Why Should We Come?

“City States starts from the premise that artists are inspired by the ‘freedom of the city’. People continue to be drawn to cities, with over 70% of the world’s population projected to live in cities by 2050. This migration gives rise to a double allegiance: to the city we live and work in, and the place of our nationality, birth, culture or ancestry.

The exhibitions in City States 2012 have been invited to respond to the theme of hospitality. To date, exhibitions have been confirmed from the following cities: Belo Horizonte, Copenhagen, Gdańsk, Hong Kong, Incheon, Lisbon, Makhachkala, Reykjavik, Oslo, Taipei, Vilnius and Wellington.”

What Shouldn’t We Miss?

“The inaugural North Atlantic Pavilion will bring together artists from Greenland, Iceland and the Faroes by honourary Scouse-Icelander, Ingi Thor. The region explored in the pavilion represents a unique interaction of diverse localised cultures spread over a vast area that nonetheless have all at one time in recent history been officiated over and represented to the outside world by the Danish Flag.”

Meanwhile, Lisbon’s CONTENTORES / CONTAINERS presents Air Print, 2012 by Miguel Palma. Inside a transformed container, a ventilation system sucks in air and dust particles, which are filtered onto a piece of fabric. The result is a constantly changing pointillist imprint of the pollution present in Liverpool’s air.

Any Special Dates?

The performance ‘Palestinian Embassy’ by Oslo’s Goksoyr & Martens will take place during the three opening days, 14th to 16th of September in Sefton Park, Liverpool. The event includes the inauguration of a Palestinian Embassy and balloon trips (in a balloon painted in the colours of the Palestinian flag) over the city. Departing from the city centre politicians and academics will join the Palestinian Ambassador aboard the balloon for discussions on the nature of place and identity.

Copenhagen’s Alfredo Cramerotti has been invited to give his perspective on the different aspects of ‘the journey’ and its importance within contemporary art practice. 15 September, 2pm, Copperas Hill.

Fascinating Art Fact

Audrius Bučas & Valdas Ozarinskas, presenting Vilnius’ Black Pillow have created the world’s largest pillow. At time of posting, we’re unsure as to whether there’s a welcome mint placed on top of it. If they stuck to the hospitality brief we’d assume there will be.

City States
Copperas Hill Venue
15 Sept – 25 Nov

One Response to “Biennial Radar: City States”

  1. Steve Mills

    i disagree. I stayed in a disneyland ranch in Florida last year, and the bed was as big as a small country. So, by rights, the pillow was probably as big as Cheshire. But a bit more comfortable.

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