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Autostrada Biennale announce advisory board members

Prizren, 06 September 2016 – International Biennale of Contemporary Art “Autostrada Biennale” with pleasure annonce the names of avisory board members:

Iara Boubnova, curator of contemporary art and art critic from Sofia, was born in Moscow, Russia. Since 1985 she works at the National Gallery for Foreign Art in Sofia as a Curator of the Department of East European Art. Since January 2015 she becomes the Deputy Director of the newly established National Gallery and is responsible for the International collection of the institution. Since 1995 Iara Boubnova is the Founding Director of the Institute of Contemporary Art – Sofia.

Sezgin Boynik, born in Prizren, Kosova, lives and works in Helsinki. He has completed his Phd in Jyväskylä University Social Science department on the topic of "Cultural Politics of Black Wave in Yugoslavia from 1963 to 1972". He has been publishing on punk, relation between aesthetics and politics, on cultural nationalism, Situationist International and Yugoslavian cinema. He is editor of Rab-Rab: Journal for Political and Formal Inquiries in Art (www.rabrab.fi).

Juan A. Gaitán (Canada/Colombia, b. 1973) is a writer and curator, based in Mexico City and Berlin. He was curator at Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art (2009–10), and Adjunct Professor in the Curatorial Practice Program at California College of the Arts, San Francisco (2011–12). From 2006–08 he was on the Board of Directors of the Western Front Society, and worked as external curator at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery in Vancouver. Gaitán writes for several journals, including Afterall, The Exhibitionist, Fillip, and Mousse.

Miran Mohar is an artist based in Ljubljana, Slovenia. He is a member of the Irwin artists group and a co-founder of the Neue Slovenishe Kunst art collective, the graphic design studio New Collectivism and the Scipion Nasice Sisters Theatre.Together with four other members of Irwin (Dušan Mandič, Andrej Savski, Roman Uranjek and Borut Vogelnik) he has participated in all Irwin projects and exhibitions since 1984.

Edi Muka (1969, Albania) is an art critic and curator. He is co-director of the Tirana International Contemporary Art Biennale (T.I.C.A.B.), a co-founder and curator of the Tirana Institute of Contemporary Art (TICA), and curator and artistic director (together with Joa Ljungberg) of Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art.

Yehuda Safran, lives and works in New York, teaching at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University and Pratt Institute and also was a Visiting Professor at the Graduate Institute of Architecture at Nanjing University, and Shanghai University, Graduate School China. He is the editor and director of Potlatch a journal of inquiry into Art and Architecture as a gift. He is a consultend to Steven Holl Architects in NY.

Sislej Xhafa, born in Pejë, Kosova, is based in New York. He is known for his artistic investigation into the social, economical and political realities associated with the various complexities of modern society. Xhafa has over the years highlighted his artistic work on economic and social themes, political realities, as they interact with the protean variety of modern society.

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AUTOSTRADA BIENNALE is created with the vision to recycle cultural gaps in the country, turning them into values, in experiential and tangible spaces, that call to push the limits of dialogue and independent thought - in an environment where reaction, research and action are turned into liberating, emancipatory, dominant and aesthetic acts.

Autostrada Biennale is founded by a team of young people, including artists, pedagogues and sociologists, united with the mission to expand the culture, on an idealist and paradoxical parameter, to open projecting and active "emergency doors". Autostrada Biennale team, founded by: Barış Karamuço, Fitore Isufi / KOJA, Leutrim Fishekqiu and Vatra Abrashi, leads an utopian factory, with the mission to transform the city simultaneously into museum and centre of the contemporary.

International Conference "Contemporary Past. Historical Future.'' was the first step in building the "Autostrada Biennale ", the first biennial of contemporary art in Kosovo, to be held in September 2017 in Prizren.

The conference was unique in itself, especially in the Kosovo context – due to the fact that was organized a year before the first edition of the biennale (having not selected yet the curator nor concept / theme), but also in undertaking its role within the Autostrada Biennale slogan, using its geographical position, at the crossroads between east and west. Without neglecting the history and the period of delay in many developmental processes, since post-war - being aware that is being created in a new small state, with fragile economy, poor education system and obstacles to free movement - it is open to cultural exchange and intellectual revival of the local and regional artistic community, activation of the city and its citizens.

Autostrada Biennale uses today’s dynamics of the country, youth vitality, local knowledge, as well as cooperative relations in region and beyond, to be self-organized and to be self-positioned in global cultural map. Therefore, the conference had a main role on this initiative because beside of bringing together international artists, curators, gallerists, leaders of cultural institutions, in a discussion with the aim to address cultural issues through different perspectives, it also resulted by founding an international advisory board.

During the following days we will publish the name of the curator of the first edition of Autostrada Biennale which will be present in Kosovo for residential program of curator.