Venice Biennale International Art Exhibition
11 May to 24 November 2019 - Preview days May 8, 9, 10, 2019
Plan sketch of the Ghana Pavilion by Sir David Adjaye OBE. Courtesy of Adjaye Associate
Featured artists: Felicia Abban, John Akomfrah, El Anatsui, Ibrahim Mahama, Selasi Awusi Sosu, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye
Commissioner: Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture of Ghana
Curator: Nana Oforiatta Ayim
Architect: Sir David Adjaye OBE
Strategic Advisor: Okwui Enwezor
Ghana will present its first national pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale and it is titled ‘Ghana Freedom’, in honour of the song composed by E.T. Mensah on the evening of the birth of the new nation in 1957.
The pavilion curated by Nana Oforiatta Ayim and designed by Sir David Adjaye examines the legacies and trajectories of that freedom through the work of six artists from three generations. The pavilion has an elliptical shape inspired by the local architecture of the Upper East Region of Ghana. The structure will show the diversity and creativity of Ghana with the newly commissioned body of works and one historical artwork.
For Ghana, this is a big achievement, especially at this moment in time; the curator aims to open a conversation about nations in the face of issues of migrations, redefining the narrative connected to the diaspora, discussing what it might mean to return to the home country, finally moving out of the ‘postcolonial’ moment into a new vision.
In addition, the Ghana Pavilion exhibition will include a publication with a foreword by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo; foreword by Honorable Catherine Afeku, and contributions by Sir David Adjaye, Kwame Anthony Appiah, Nana Oforiatta Ayim, Okwui Enwezor, Taiye Selasi, Hakeem Adam, Adjoa Armah, Mae-ling Lokko, Kuukuwa Manful, Larry Ossei-Mensah, and Mavis Tetteh-Ocloo.
There will be a series of platforms during the Biennale, and Ghana Freedom will travel from Venice to Accra after the Biennale