FORT COCHIN: DECEMBER 12, 2022 - APRIL 10, 2023

Founded in 2010, the Kochi Biennale Foundation (KBF) was started by artists for artists, with the intention to bring contemporary art and ideas from across the world to South Asia. Situated in Fort Kochi, an island not far away from Muziris, the ancient port on the maritime silk route, the site was a nod to both a history of trade and cultural contamination, and a locus for global, cutting-edge contemporary art.

"We have always wanted to extend Kochi Muziris Biennale beyond the exhibition format to be a space of thought, sharing, mediation, and knowledge production." Bose Krishnamachari

This year, the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, turns ten. While it is a moment to celebrate, it has also been a time of deep reflection to learn from our past, acknowledge our failures and continue working in and with our present. Bose Krishnamachari, President KBF, notes: "As every institution must, we are also constantly thinking about building a more agile, accommodative structure that is able to host a diversity of people and practices across various formats. We have always wanted to extend ourselves beyond the exhibition format to be a space of thought, sharing, mediation, and knowledge production. We remain grateful to the Government of Kerala and all our patrons and supporters for their unwavering, unconditional support and look forward to welcoming you to Fort Kochi from December, until April 2023."

Led by Director of Programmes, Mario D’Souza, the discursive and programmes mandate of the foundation will also evolve into a fluid, open framework that encourages slow, considered production and invests in co-building ecologies of care. D’Souza notes, "The challenges we face as not-for-profit organisations in our regions, have led us to constantly think about putting our means together. How can we strive to move from survival to stability, through relationships of co-nourishment? How can we be frugal, yet agile and be open to learning from the rich work, methods, and frameworks developed by one another? This is where we hope to be - in resistance and solidarity, and together against systems that consistently expect us to fit in or subsume our lived experiences and hard work."

The biennale programme will host contributions from diverse voices and practices including Homi Bhabha with Jitish Kallat; Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Pallavi Paul and Shaunak Sen with Jeebesh Bagchi initiated by ICAS-MP and its media module Media and the Constitution of the Political; Ali Cherri; Ala Younis; The White Review with Dayanita Singh, Vikram Aditya Sahai, and Shripad Sinnakar; Manu S Pillai; and Decolonizing Architecture Art Research. A full list of contributors and a schedule will be announced in the second half of October. In addition to the talks and seminar programmes, the foundation will also host book launches, film, theatre, dance, and music programmes including the folk traditions of Kerala. 


As a platform based in South Asia, how can we share space, resources, and audiences with other platforms in our regions and create a mobility of ideas and frameworks in an increasingly fragile, politically vulnerable world?

We are humbled to unveil our invitations programme that brings together a plethora of exhibition formats from Asia and Africa to share our primary venues, alongside Shubigi Rao’s In Our Veins Flow Ink and Fire. These will include Tangled Hierarchy curated by Jitish Kallat (John Hansard Gallery in partnership with the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art); an exhibition around independent publishing curated by Kayfa ta (Ala Younis and Maha Mammoun); Bhumi by the Gidree Bawlee Foundation of Arts and the Durjoy Bangladesh Foundation; and Communities of Choice curated by the Chennai Photo Biennale Foundation and Ffotogallery Wales (supported by the British Council) amongst others. The Durbar Hall in Ernakulam will see a survey of contemporary art practices from Kerala curated by Gigi Scaria, PS Jalaja and Radha Gomathy commissioned by the Kochi Biennale Foundation in association with the Kerala Lalithakala Academy.

The Kochi-Biennale Foundation will also enter into a long term collaboration with HH Art Spaces in Goa, who have been invited to curate the performance programme during the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2022 and will feature contributions from Amol K Patil, Joydeb Roaja, Sarah Naqvi, Hilal Ahmed amongst other artists. This edition also marks a culmination of our partnerships with UNESCO and the Muziris Heritage Project into a range of programmes along the river Periyar and in Fort Kochi.

The DBF-KMB Award is a new, multi-year exhibition and lecture programme that brings together the Hayward Gallery, the Durjoy Bangladesh Foundation (DBF) and the Kochi Biennale Foundation. The Award will grant an emerging South Asian artist participating in the biennale the opportunity to present their first institutional solo show in the UK at Hayward Gallery’s HENI Project Space. KMB is also pleased to be one of the international partners for TBA21’s st_age with artist Pranay Dutta’s commission for the platform.

The fifth edition of the Students Biennale will evolve through the duration of its exhibition and continue beyond its timeline. With the limitations of state education and to challenge the pressure to be exposed to materials, methods, and texts not relevant to our context, this edition will be informed by its student artists and the diversity of their practices, ideas and needs. Led by Yogesh Barve and Saviya Lopes, Amshu Chukki, Arushi Vats, Suvani Suri, Afrah Shafiq, Premjish Achari and the Anga Art Collective, we hope to produce safe, transforming spaces for conversations and making. 

The International Residency programme at the KBF will also evolve to focus on artistic research and thematic frameworks. These will include two long-term multi-partner, collaborative projects that contemplate and challenge imaginations of both the Indian Ocean world and the idea of Asia. A larger framework will be announced in the run up to the biennale.

Art by Children (ABC) programme is a part of the KBF’s research driven art education programme designed for communities, children, art educators, and teachers. This year will also mark a new phase in our ongoing ABC programme led by Blaise Joseph as we start two new art rooms in Calicut supported by the Faizal & Shabana Foundation. ABC will also endeavour to train art educators, develop, and share curriculums India wide.

We are also delighted to launch our Knowledge Lab that will work to harbour and advance thoughts and ideas with the hope of extending our approach towards our fast-changing world. It will facilitate a mutual exchange of ideas to create the conditions for further work and scholarship. The Lab draws on, and learns from, voices and scholarship from our region and will serve as an incubator for research and knowledge production. Our discursive programme this year will also extend to support thinking and knowledge around independent publishing, artist books, documentation, and archival practices. A dedicated publishing pavilion will host publishing practices from across South Asia, Asia, and Africa through the duration of the biennale.






Seeks to invoke the cosmopolitan spirit of the modern metropolis of Kochi and its mythical past, Muziris, create a platform that introduce contemporary international visual art theory and practice to India.



Artist, writer and curator of KMB 2022 titled In Our Veins Flow Ink and Fire, the exhibition will bring together 80 artists and collectives with over 45 new commissions.


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