March 5, 2021 - Artes Mundi - Artes Mundi 9
March 5, 2021

Artes Mundi

Carrie Mae Weems, Repeating the Obvious, 2019 (detail). 39 digital archival prints of various sizes. Courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York. Photo: Polly Thomas. 

Firelei Báez, Untitled (City Incinerator 'B'), 2021; Untitled (A Map of the British Empire in America), 2021. Courtesy the artist and James Cohan, New York. Photo: Polly Thomas.

Prabhakar Pachpute, Rattling knot, 2020; The close observer, 2020. Courtesy the artist and Experimenter Gallery, Kolkata. Photo: Polly Thomas.

Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, Gosila, 2018; About falling, 2021. Courtesy the artist. Photo: Polly Thomas.

Meiro Koizumi, The Angels of Testimony, 2019 (detail). Commissioned by the Sharjah Art Foundation. Courtesy the artist, Annet Gelink Gallery, Amsterdam and MUJIN-To Production, Tokyo. Photo: Polly Thomas.

Dineo Seshee Bopape, Master Harmoniser, 2020 (detail). Courtesy the bakgethwa ancestors. Photo: Stuart Whipps.

Artes Mundi 9
March 15–September 5, 2021
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Digital exhibition via website  

National Museum Cardiff
Cathays Park
Cardiff, CF10 3NP
United Kingdom  

Market Rd
Cardiff, CF5 1QE  
United Kingdom  

Firelei Báez (Dominican Republic) / Dineo Seshee Bopape (South Africa) / Meiro Koizumi (Japan) / Beatriz Santiago Muñoz (Puerto Rico) / Prabhakar Pachpute (India) / Carrie Mae Weems (USA) 

Due to the ongoing challenges wrought by COVID-19, the UK’s largest international contemporary art prize Artes Mundi 9 will now open virtually on Monday, March 15, 2021. Audiences will be able to explore the exhibition initially through guided video walkthroughs of each artist’s presentation and still photographic documentation within gallery settings. Although an opening date remains unknown currently and subject to many external circumstances, the Artes Mundi 9 Prize winner announcement will take place digitally on Thursday, April 15, 2021.  

The biennial exhibition will open to the public when Wales returns to Tier 2 restrictions and in-person visits are possible but online visitors will first have the opportunity to view the global premiere of major new works by many of the shortlisted artists.  

American artist Carrie Mae Weems, celebrated for her powerful engagement with Black and female representation, encompasses cultural identity, racism, class, political systems and the consequences of power. A new photographic installation, The Push, The Call, The Scream, The Dream reflects on the late civil rights activist John Robert Lewis within the context of the present, while a selection of large-scale pieces from her recent public art campaign interrogates the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on communities of colour while offering messages of hope.  

A new 16mm film, About Falling by Puerto Rican artist Beatriz Santiago Muñoz forms part of a film and video presentation that poetically creates a layered installation of non-linear narratives considering the histories and continuing presence of various colonisers on Puerto Rico, its landscape, people and culture. 

Dominican Republic-born and New York-based artist Firelei Báez, has produced four major new large-scale paintings celebrating Diasporic narrative and black female subjectivity, while South African artist Dineo Seshee Bopape materially and conceptually engages with place, history, and the consequences of the trans-Atlantic slave-trade through objects, drawing and song, presenting art as embodying the potential for acknowledgement and reconciliation.  

Japanese artist Meiro Koizumi’s haunting video triptych The Angels of Testimony tackles the legacy of the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), dismantling cultural taboos by acknowledging shameful histories. Prabhakar Pachpute—whose family worked in the coal mines of central India for three generations—draws on shared cultural heritage with the Welsh mining community to create an installation of new paintings and canvas banners that harness the iconography of protest and collective action. 

As part of Artes Mundi’s new digital offering, a robust public programme will launch online alongside the exhibition, structured as a series of talks, podcasts, live streamed events and downloadable activities.   

Hosted on Zoom and presented in partnership with Cardiff Metropolitan University, the At the table … talks will be free to all with the first launching on Thursday 11 March at 8pm GMT featuring shortlisted artist Firelei Báez in conversation with Artes Mundi 9 juror Rachel Kent, Chief Curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Dr Francesca Sobande, lecturer of Digital Media Studies at University of Cardiff and Trinidad-born, Cardiff-based artist and researcher Dr Adéọlá Dewis. The live talks will subsequently be made available as podcasts via the Artes Mundi website.   

At the table with Firelei Báez:
 March 11, 8–9pm
Joined by Dr. Adéọlá Dewis, Rachel Kent and Dr Francesca Sobande

At the table with Dineo Seshee Bopape: April 8, 7–8pm
Joined by Marie Hélène Pereira, Elvira Dyangani-Ose, Evan Ifekoya and Tina Pasotra

At the table with Beatriz Santiago Muñoz: April 21, 7–8pm
Joined by Gina Athena Ulysse, Francis McKee and Yvonne Connikie

At the table with Carrie Mae Weems: May 7, 7–8pm
Joined by Sonia Boyce, Thomas J Lax, Umulkhayr Mohamed and Nicole Ready

At the table with Meiro Koizumi: May 19, 1–2pm
Joined by Zoe Butt, Abu-Bakr Madden Al Shabazz and Evie Manning

At the table with Prabhakar Pachpute: May 26, 7–8pm
Joined by Zasha Colah, Sian Williams and Dr Radhika Mohanram

Alongside other shortlisted artists, contributors to upcoming talks will include internationally known figures such as: Sonia Boyce, who will represent the UK at the Venice Biennale in 2021; Marie Hélène Pereira (Director of Programmes, RAW Material Company, Senegal); Elvira Dyangani-Ose (AM9 juror and Director, The Showroom, London); and Zoe Butt (Artistic Director, Factory Contemporary Arts Centre, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam). They will join UK and Wales based artists, curators and thinkers including Evie Manning (Co-Director, Common Wealth Theatre based in Cardiff and Bradford); Francis McKee (Director of CCA Glasgow); and Yvonne Connikie (Artist and Founder of Black Film Festival Wales), amongst many others.   

Further details about the exhibition and tickets for the extensive range of online public programmes will be available on the Artes Mundi website.  

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