SAHA provides support for Cansu Çakar, Cengiz Tekin, Erkan Özgen, Kavachi, Hale Tenger, Egemen Demirci and Mehtap Baydu’s artworks at the 6th Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art, curated by Çağla Īlk, Misal Adnan Yıldız, and Assaf Kimmel. Held on 2 October - 5 December 2021, under the title “A Time to Embrace and to Refrain from Embracing,” the curatorial team presents their project titled “Thinking Hands Touching Each Other” at four venues in Ekaterinburg, focusing on performance and participatory practice.
The 6th Ural Biennial, features 52 artists and collectives from 23 countries and regions, presenting 76 works, including 24 new commissions. Working in quarantine conditions has determined the conceptual peculiarity of the main project: it is hausgemacht (‘homemade’ in German), alluding to how social distancing and pandemic-era border politics complicated research trips and studio visits. Logging an overwhelming amount of screen time, the curators carried on long-distance conversations with artists from cities all over the world, including Berlin, Istanbul, Stockholm, Tel Aviv and Auckland. Like tracking the migration routes of birds, they connected these artists’ studios to each other using the tools of digital communication. One of the key elements of the 2021 biennial is its experimental performative approach.
The Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art is the largest contemporary art project in Russia, with more than 300 artists from 52 countries have participated in it. The Biennial is a format initiated and developed by the director of the National Center for Contemporary Art, Ekaterinburg branch, Alisa Prudnikova and launched in 2010. It is intended to be an international contemporary art event of a scale unmatched in the region, a platform to integrate business and artistic elites, which is decisive in the development of creative industries in one of Russia’s most thriving areas.