Bali's first Fine Arts Biennale

A group of Balinese scholars, artists and writers have pooled their resources to organize the island's first fine arts biennale.

The biennale, will be focused on the central theme of Space and Scape. Spatial awareness has always been an important element of Balinese Hindu teaching; therefore, it has also influenced the island's arts and culture to a large degree.

"Space can be interpreted as place, cycle or mandala, with Scape as dimension, panorama or outlook. In this context, the biennale's mission is to provide a space, where spirit of innovation and transformation, creative energy and aesthetic reformation can work together and give birth to new, avant garde maestros and masterpieces," biennale organizing committee chairman Prof. Dr. I Made Bandem said on Monday of this week.

The biennale will comprise two main events, the pre-Summit and the Summit. The pre-Summit will take place from January until October 2005 while the Summit will be held from November to December 2005.
Entrance of ARMA, one of the venues of the upcoming Bali Biennale

The members of the organising board are Kompas's Bentara Budaya curator Ipong Purnama Sidhi, founder of the Agung Rai Museum of Arts (ARMA) Agung Rai, Yogyakarta-based art critic Suwarno Wisetrotomo, acclaimed sculptor Nyoman Nuarta, anthropologist Jean Couteau, art critic and Head of Bali Corruption Watch Putu Wirata Dwikora and accomplished painter I Wayan Sika.

"As you can see, the board of curators' memberships reflect the biennale's respect for cultural openness and diversity," Bandem said.

The biennale is expected to be the largest contemporary arts gathering in the island's history, involving numerous accomplished painters and sculptors and various arts institutions in the island. At least 10 major museums and galleries have expressed their support for the biennale, including the Bentara Budaya, Danes Art Veranda, Darga Gallery, Komaneka Gallery, ARMA, Neka Museum, Puri Lukisan Museum and Gunarsa Museum. More details from today's Jakarta Post.