The 2020 Cornell Biennial will feature artistic environments that provoke University-wide conversation about multitude, motion, sound, migration, and threat, while reflecting on precarity in an age of technological abundance.
In image, movement, and assemblage, Swarm lies at the core of the artistic and design process, whether through the assemblage and casting of materials, the combinatory of data, the imaging of ecology, the profusion of sound, the flight of drones or the performance of multitude. The profusion of swarm, as well as its peril, traverse the divides of performance, art, sound, architecture, design, ecology, biology, and information.
While swarming invokes the movement of bees, birds, and drones, swarms migrate in insecurity, abound in protest, infest in virus, and multiply in celebration. Biennial projects might ponder physical force and magnificence, ecological hazard, robotic motion, bursts of data, abundance of sound, density of artistic form, promise of the crowd or threat of the multitude. Artistic approaches to networks, swarms, and multitudes will summon the natural and social, touch the technological and the political, while conjuring traumatic pasts and utopic futures.
Swarm: precarity as potentiality.
Unfortunately, the precarity of COVID-19 got the best of the 2020 Cornell Biennial, mostly cancelled just prior to installation. We here “embalm” the 2020 Biennial as an energetic web swarm awaiting its potential as physical realization.
2020 Cornell Biennial Team
Timothy Murray (Curator/CCA Director)
Erin Emerson (Program Coordinator)
Sasa Zivkovic (Architecture)
Renate Ferro (Art)
Denise Green (Fiber Science & Apparel Design)
Lyrae Van Clief-Stefanon (English)
Karen Pinkus (Romance Studies/Comparative Literature)
Annie Lewandowski (Music)
Ellen Avril (Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art)
Amy Villarejo (Performing and Media Arts)
Lauren van Haaften-Schick (Graduate Student Representative)
Jolene Rickard (American Indian and Indigenous Studies/Art/History of Art)
Wendy Rosenthal Gellman, Chair (New York City)
Dan Desmond (New York City)
William Lim (Hong Kong)
Shin-yi Yang (Beijing)