Liverpool Biennial 2012: City States

15 September – 25 November 2012

Copperas Hill Building

Since 2006, Liverpool Biennial has included ‘collateral’ events organised and supported by embassies, international agencies or galleries, and promoted by Liverpool Biennial as a part of the programme. In 2010, for the first time, Liverpool Biennial solicited exhibitions organised overseas and promoted under the title City States.

City States starts from the premise that artists and their art are inspired by the ‘freedom of the city’. People continue to be drawn to cities, with over 70% of the world’s population projected to live in cities by 2050.

This migration and its focus gives rise to a double allegiance: to the city we live and work in, and the place of our nationality, birth, culture or ancestry. Cities demand enormous resources and are the greatest economic drivers. For these reasons the state of cities increasingly determines the future of States.


City States also responds to the theme of hospitality and contributes to its wider exploration. City States 2012 brings together over 60 artists from seven countries, exploring the dynamics between cities and states with new and pre-existing works. City States will present work from cities such as Copenhagen, Gdańsk, Hong Kong, Incheon, Lisbon, Makhachkala, Reykjavik, Oslo, Taipei, Vilnius, Wellington.

The artists invited to create The Unexpected Guest and City States 2012 question our ability to be “unprepared”. Can we afford to be hospitable in these critical times?”

City States: Project List

Birmingham: Birmingham The Magic City
Helen Brown
Home of Metal
Napalm Death
plan b
David Rowan
Bedwyr Williams

Copenhagen: Approaching Journey
Yvette Brackman
Ismar Cirkinagic
Jens Haaning
Jane Jin Kaisen

Erbil: Untitled

Gdańsk: Unwanted Visitors
Yael Bartana
Oskar Hansen
Alicja Karska & Aleksandra Went
Slawomir Lipnicki
Janek Simon
Kama Sokolnicka

Hong Kong: All Are Guests
Chow Chun-fai
LEUNG Mee-ping

Incheon: Terra Galaxia
Sen Chung
Kyungah Ham
Seoung Won Won
Will Bolton
Sukgeun Oh
Yoon Suknam

Lisbon: Air Print
Miguel Palma

Makhachkala: Topography of Masculinity
Taus Makhacheva

Oslo: Palestinian Embassy
Goksoyr & Martens

Reykjavik, Nuuk, Tórshavn: North Atlantic Pavilion
Hanni Bjartalíð
Sigurður Guðjónsson
Jessie Kleemann

St. Petersburg: Interior
Masha Godovannaya

Taipei: Metro-Wonderland: Taiwanese Artists and Urban Morphology
CHEN Chia-Jen
CHIU Chen-Hung
HSU Chia-Wei

Vilnius: Black Pillow
Audrius Bučas & Valdas Ozarinskas

Wellington: Watermarking
David Bennewith
William Hsu
Marnie Slater