A Resilience of an African Art Scene that Refuses to Go Away Quietly

Just when everyone thought the Algerian political crisis had caused its Pavilion to disappear from the official map with the country’s first-time participation in the Venice Biennale postponed to 2021, some of the artists chosen for the show, curated by Hellal Mahmood Zoubir, have decided to stage a guerrilla exhibition, titled Time to Shine Bright. Since its independence in 1962, Algeria has mostly been absent from major international cultural events. As a major African country, artists believe Algeria, like Ghana and Madagascar, deserves to have its first pavilion at the Venice Biennale this year, alongside other newcomers like Malaysia and Pakistan. It is not only that Algerian artists wanted to present their work within an artistic project of a pavilion, but believe it is a responsibility and a civic duty to honor the country of Algeria and its flag at the most important Biennals. The Venice Biennale is an international intellectual competition of contemporary arts, and for some the aim is to compete and win the Golden Lion.


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