“Inventing the World: The Artist as Citizen” will take place from November 8, 2012–January 13, 2013.
Taking initiatives that have occurred in Benin in recent years such as Meschac Gaba’s Musée de l’Art et de la Vie Active (MAVA) and Zinkpè’s Boulev’art as a starting point “to interrogate the notion of the artist as citizen both as an aesthetic idea and an ethical project” and is inspired by history, by the Beninese and African contexts. Along with an exhibition of new commissions and existing works by 36 artists, the Benin Biennale will feature nearly 100 additional artists in the special projects, encounters and workshops. Curated by artistic director, Abdellah Karroum, the main venue for the international exhibition is Centre Kora. Artists in the exhibition include: Adel Abdessemed, Ebtisam Abdulaziz, Georges Adéagbo, Sofia Aguiar, Malala Andrialavidrazana, Owusu Ankomah, Edwige Aplogan, Aston, Azankpo, Ismaïl Bahri, Frédéric Bruly Bouabré, Gabriella Ciancimino, Soly Cissé, Tomás Colaço, Nestor Da, Badr El Hammami, Meschac Gaba, Pélagie Gbaguidi, Dor Guez, Camille Henrot, Invisible Borders (Emeka Okereke), Toril Johannessen, Syl.Pâris.Kouton, Adrian Missika, Otobong Nkanga, Hermann Pitz, Gérard Quenum, Karim Rafi, Younès Rahmoun, Raqs Media Collective, Tchif, Jean-Paul Thibeau, Cyprien Tokoudagba, Vincent+Feria, Zinkpè.
Biennale Bénin was initiated by the Beninese Ministry of Culture along with Institut Français and Beninese arts organizations in 2010 following the 50th Anniversary of the Independences of Benin and other African countries.