The Yokohama Triennale is an international exhibition of contemporary art held in Yokohama once every three years. The exhibition features both internationally renowned and up-and-coming artists, and presents the latest trends and expressions in contemporary art. Since its inauguration in 2001, the Yokohama Triennale has addressed the relationships between Japan and the world, and the individual and society, and reexamined the social role of art from a variety of perspectives, in response to a world in constant flux.
The theme of the 8th Yokohama Triennale is “Wild Grass: Our Lives,” taken from the Chinese writer Lu Xun’s (1881– 1936) anthology Wild Grass, published in 1927. Lu Xun penned the 23 essays compiled in this book from 1924 to 1926, during the turbulent period in Chinese history as well as his personal life, and through it found a thin thread of hope in times of despair. “Wild Grass” is a metaphor celebrating our lives, which are fragile and defenseless but strong and resilient at the same time. It is a metaphor for our lives fraught with many challenges, such as the pandemic, climate change, war in Ukraine, economic disparities, as well as rampant fake news and questions on moral responsibilities on digital platforms.
Starting from the period of Lu Xun, the exhibition traces several historical moments, such as the end of the Cold War, that have consequently shaped the oppressive conditions we face today. By juxtaposing works by contemporary artists from different parts of the world with historical artworks, we can reflect on our way of life and search for hope in our future. With a goal to be one of the best beginner's guides to contemporary art, the 8th edition of Yokohama Triennale will strive to engage the public in the spirit of “Wild Grass.”
LIU Ding and Carol Yinghua LU are an artist and art historian respectively who started joint curatorial work in 2007. Based in Beijing, they have participated in international exhibitions around the world including the Venice, Gwangju, Istanbul and Busan biennales.
In a time of historical flux, their curation seeks out kernels of wisdom for surviving the present in both the minutiae of individual endeavor and the grand turning points of history. Their frame of reference transcends time and place, as they seek ideas in everything from traditional oriental philosophy to the globalized lifestyles of the 21st century.
We welcome as artistic director a team that is active on the global stage, and with them we look forward to creating an event that is open to the world and that takes advantage of our port city's role as a crossroads of people and culture.