Biennale of Sydney announces first online programming

Ibrahim Mahama’s No Friend but the Mountains (2020). Installation view at Cockatoo Island - photo by Zan WimberleyThe Biennale of Sydney has announced initial details of how it is taking the 22nd edition online through a series of activations and experiences. From Monday 6 April 2020, online programming linked to the seven themes that inspire the exhibition will be held daily over 10 weeks on the Biennale of Sydney’s website and social channels.

“The 22nd Biennale of Sydney, titled NIRIN, is a global platform for diverse cultures and perspectives, uniting people across the world, stimulating dialogue and inspiring change,” said Biennale of Sydney Chief Executive Officer Barbara Moore. Now, more than ever, it is important to find ways to connect, to help each other, listen, collaborate and heal.”

The Biennale remains artist-led and the online NIRIN WIR program is a space for artists to lead the way in responding to the urgent social, political and environmental issues we are facing today.

  • BILA (River: Environment): Each week will begin with a focus on our own physical environment, as well as the changing environments of our local and global communities including playlists and podcasts to set the tone for the week.
  • GURRAY (Transformation): Looking at transformation as a tool for change, the Biennale will share new experiences of exhibition spaces, artworks and processes through the voices and perspectives of artists, curators and educators.
  • MURIGUWAL GIILAND (Different Stories): Every Wednesday, the Biennale’s global community of artists will host social media takeovers, watch parties, and never-before-seen content on the Biennale’s IGTV channel.
  • NGAWAAL-GUYUNGAN (Powerful-Ideas: The Power of Objects): The Biennale is creating spaces for artists and audiences to connect, collaborate and express powerful ideas through performances, readings and conversations.
  • DHAAGUN (Earth: Sovereignty and Working Together): Every Friday, Artistic Director Brook Andrew will connect with the global community of NIRIN artists and curators to give unique insights into the exhibition.
  • YIRAWY–DHURAY (Yam-Connection: Food): How can we gather in isolation? Each weekend, artists and community leaders will share their personal favourite recipes encouraging audiences to cook together from kitchens all around the world.
  • BAGARAY-BANG (Healing): Stay connected with friends and family near and far through a series of intergenerational activities that include workshops using recycled materials, easy craft projects, readings and lots more.

Every Tuesday, teachers, students and families across the globe will be able to access a range of learning material about NIRIN – from environmental studies to Indigenous histories and cultures – through to interactive resources, podcasts, artist interviews, videos and tutorials.

Further details about how audiences can experience the 700 artworks featured in the 22nd Biennale of Sydney through Google’s Arts & Culture platform will be announced in the coming weeks. This platform will bring artworks from all six exhibition partners online for audiences to experience in compelling new ways including 360-degree tours, video walk-throughs and curated content.

For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Ibrahim Mahama’s No Friend but the Mountains (2020). Installation view at Cockatoo Island – photo by Zan Wimberley