From 2021, the Biennale's Veduta program proposes moments of encounters, dialogue, and shared creations with 12 territories (to this day) of the Lyon metropolitan area and the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region.

Artistic Director : Isabelle Bertolotti
In charge of Veduta : Adeline Lépine

Edito 2021

working with a paradox
defining the elusive
visualizing the invisible
communicating the incommunicable
not accepting the limitations society has accepted
seeing in new ways
(…) being creatively obsessive

(Excerpt of Agnès Denes’s Manifesto, 1969)

Born from the will to make the relationship between Art and Territory one of the axes of development of the Biennale of Contemporary Art, the Veduta program proposes moments of encounter, dialogue, and shared creations that engage curious people, artists, works, and ecosystems. Each project constitutes a rhizome that develops from a collective, transversal, nomadic, and inventive thought – which has led us in the past to imagine projects as diverse as weighing an island, hybridizing plants in revolt, looking for cobblestones under the beach, or listening to works by touching the bottom of the swimming pool!

In continuity with the 15th Biennale of Contemporary Art, whose production was based on a short circuit logic, the 16th edition, currently being written by the curatorial duo Sam Bardaouil and Till Fellrath, focuses even more on deepening these notions of "local" and "proximity." Based on these, they wish to highlight the current cultural, economic, social, and political challenges of art to fully "be" in the world. The postponement of the event to 2022 favors an abundance of artistic projects starting in advance, allowing Veduta to establish itself over time.

These approaches, which are always co-created, will begin in 2021 with encounter and conviviality1 as their foundations. They involve proximity, hospitality, and intimacy between those who come together. They function according to the power of weak ties2 by associating people who, frequently, don’t know each other. What binds them together is the will to establish a "community through doing," the conviction that it’s necessary to be united once more, and the desire to navigate again between the inside and the outside. It is also, in the end, the certainty that the exercise of democracy must be pursued. With its "tools for conviviality3," this experimental laboratory offers the opportunity to construct aesthetics of existence and modes of observation of our time. The aim is not to reach conclusions, but rather to foster a transformation of the ways we create and act.

Itinerant works, artists in residence, or creative experiments thus accompany the questions that cross our minds: Where do we stand now? What are the sounds that reach us? How can we convey the lessons and stories that we have experienced? How can we reinvest the places of the common? How can we reconnect with our environment and all of the lives that compose it? Veduta in 2021 is an invitation to a temporary and fertile stopover to resume the journey that shapes a Biennale and to attempt to initiate together new ways of production of what is common, for tomorrow.

Adeline Lépine, In charge of Veduta

1 Or, to say it differently, the "autonomous and creative intercourse among persons, and the intercourse of persons with their environment" - Ivan Illich, Tools for Conviviality, Harper & Row, 1973

2 From the title of the book by Sandra Laugier and Alexandre Gefen, CNRS Editions, 2020. "Weak ties" is a notion forged by the American sociologist Mark Granovetter in the 1970s. It refers to the ties to others who are outside the family, work, and friendship, but which are constitutive of shared experiences outside of the domestic or professional space that defines us as social subjects. Weak ties are necessary for our sense of belonging to the world and have proven essential in times of lockdown.

3 "Tool for conviviality" as defined by Illich Op. Cit

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