HIAP participates in the Gwangju Biennale Pavilion Project

HIAP – Helsinki International Artist Programme participates in the Gwangju Biennale Pavilion Project of 2018. Based in Helsinki, Finland, HIAP is a platform for international collaborative projects, and residencies for art professionals from around the world.

The exhibition and public programme in Gwangju, titled Fictional Frictions, sets out to explore shifting understandings of borders. Following HIAP’s tentacular way of operating, the exhibition builds a bridge for artists and thinkers from Finland and South Korea to gently collide and coexist for a moment.

The exhibition investigates diverse mechanisms of boundary making, and fosters unexpected entanglements. Finnish artists Elina Vainio (b.1981) and Nestori Syrjälä (b.1983) will examine humans’ influences and ways of relating to ecological transformations. Both artists work across sculpture, installation, video, and performance. For Gwangju Biennale, they will realise context-specific iterations of their recent installations. In the following weeks, HIAP will announce the names of the participating Korean artists.
The pavilion is curated by Jenni Nurmenniemi (HIAP) who has in recent years worked extensively on Frontiers in Retreat, a five-year project on art and ecology.

HIAP Pavilion is realised as part of the 12th Gwangju Biennale Pavilion Project, with the support of Gwangju Biennale Foundation, and in partnership with Frame Contemporary Art Finland.

The 12th Gwangju Biennale runs from September 7 until 11 November 2018 in Gwangju, South Korea.

Referencing Benedict Anderson’s famous study of nationalism, Imagined Communities, the 12th Gwangju Biennale’s theme, Imagined Borders, discusses a contemporary phenomenon in depth, wherein national and geopolitical borders are being reorganized after globalisation.


About HIAP – Helsinki International Artist Programme

The programming at HIAP focuses on contemporary art but is open to other disciplines as well. HIAP runs international collaborative projects that concentrate on a specific area of interest or aspect of artistic/curatorial practice. HIAP fosters international dialogue with the aim of initiating and supporting experimentation, research, and cross-disciplinary creativity across national borders and diverse contexts of art. Every year HIAP offers 70–90 art professionals from around the world funded residencies of 1–3 months, or even up to 11 months. HIAP studios, which combine living and working space, are located on the island of Suomenlinna and Cable Factory, in Helsinki, Finland.

In 2018, HIAP celebrates its 20th anniversary.


Image: Elina Vainio and Nestori Syrjälä. Photo by Sergio Urbina.