In May 2018, a new European biennial will launch focused on the artistic landscape of Riga, Latvia, and the Baltic states, a territory whose artistic production has yet to be fully excavated. Serving as a platform that will transmit the cultural, historical and socio-political contexts of the city and neighbouring region to a broader, global audience, its mission statement declares it will “take root and make roots” in Riga and beyond with Katerina Gregos at its helm.
An initiative of the Riga Biennial Foundation, founder and director Agniya Mirgorodoskaya has established a structure for the new institution to stand apart from recent criticisms around “biennialisation”, and aims to increase its longevity, sustainability and gravitas by prioritising artists, artistic production, and the curation and mediation of art. A site of knowledge production and local and regional exchange as much as serving as an archive of current evens through the observations of artists and biennial collaborators, RIBOCA will also draw heavily from its rich past as a key trading post between East, West and North. Taking Riga and RIBOCA’s psycho-geographical position forward will be Katerina Gregos, announced on 2 April as the first chief curator.
Gregos, a Greek-born curator, writer and lecturer, most recently curated the Belgian National Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale. She has served as founding director and curator of the Deste Foundation’s Centre for Contemporary Art (Athens), artistic director of Argos Centre for Art and Media (Brussels) and Art Brussels, and as a jury member at the Finnish and Irish National Pavilions at the upcoming 2017 Venice Biennale, the 2016 Berlinale, YAYA Young Artist of the Year Award for Palestinian artists, and the 2015 Hasselbad Prize, among others.
For more information visit rigabiennial.com