Since 2013 the City of Sydney has partnered with the Biennale of Sydney to ensure key artworks by the world’s leading contemporary artists remain in Sydney after the biannual event.
In 2014, the 1st legacy artwork The City of Forking Paths was commissioned by the City of Sydney and the Biennale of Sydney. It was commissioned for the 19th Biennale titled, You Imagine What You Desire, curated by Julianna Engberg.
In 2016, Here, an echo by Australian born Agatha Gothe-Snape was the 2nd legacy artwork commissioned for the 20th Biennale of Sydney: The future is already here – it’s just not evenly distributed (2016), curated by Stephanie Rosenthal.
The 3rd legacy artwork for 2018’s 21st Biennale of Sydney: Superposition Equilibrium & Engagement, curated by Artistic Director Mami Kataoka, is currently being negotiated. The City plans to announce this legacy artwork in early 2019.
This partnership draws on the Biennale’s capacity to attract top Australian and international artists who create works that inspire, challenge and move us. Juliana Engberg, the Biennale’s 2014 artistic director, said the partnership allows “the memory of Biennales past” to linger in the city’s public spaces. Ms Engberg said,
The legacy project recognises the contribution the Biennale can make to the culture of place, and this new collaborative approach to commissioning offers great opportunities for artistic celebration in perpetuity.
In 1973, the Biennale of Sydney was the first biennale to be established in the Asia-Pacific region. Alongside the Venice and São Paulo biennales, and Documenta, which occurs every 5 years in Kassel, Germany, it’s one of the longest running exhibitions of its kind.
In recognition of the program’s successful integration of innovative contemporary artworks into Sydney’s public domain, the City extended the partnership agreement in 2018 to continue to work with the Biennale of Sydney until 2024.