GWANGJU BIENNALE President Yang-Woo Park

Gwangju Biennale is the history and pride of Korean biennales. Since its establishment in 1994, the thirteen editions of the Gwangju Biennale have made an enormous contribution to the development of art communities in and outside of Korea. From its beginning as a representative domestic art festival, the Gwangju Biennale has evolved into one of the most respected and reputable international art events.

As biennales around the world today face unprecedented challenges, new discourse for contemporary art and existing cultures has become a necessity in reclaiming the intrinsic vision and values of biennales. Having witnessed the emergence of this crisis, the Gwangju Biennale aims to play a leveraging role in elevating art and cultural history. We intend to set ourselves apart from others by presenting a global art event known for its unique ties to the City of Gwangju. Its history, its artists, as well as its citizens will be respected, embraced, and adored under the name of Gwangju Biennale, with Gwangju as the everlasting subject, topic, and vision of the event. Taking firm root in the city, the Biennale will continue to grow as a world-wide event encompassing the global community.

For many, a biennale provides a chance to reflect on their lives and society, to feel joy, and to be inspired and re-motivated. It is my hope that the Gwangju Biennale will enhance the reputation of Gwangju and continue to be a source of pride for its citizens. And by doing so it will contribute to the prosperity of the Korea’s cultural industry, the growth of the local industry, and the advancement of the nation. The Biennale will act as a gateway leading local artists to the global stage and present local arts and culture institutions with opportunities to strengthen their presence and organizational performance.

My fellow Gwangju citizens, Koreans, and members of the global community, I welcome you to share your vision with us and join us on this mesmerizing journey. The Gwangju Biennale will always be by your side.

Thank you very much.