From July 13-30 2023, this biennial will present works by 30 artists in five cultural venues in Guatemala City and Antigua.
Colectivo Tz´aqol: Victor Manuel Barillas and Marta Guadalupe Tuyuc Us, "Solik/Desatar"(Solik/Tie off), monologue, theatrical representation , video recording 23'22'', 2022. Photo courtesy of: Kaos Audiovisual.
The XXIII Paiz Art Biennial Bienal is a poem
bebí palabras sumergidas en sueños (i drank words immersed in dreams)
is the title of the project, a verse belonging to the poem Nací mujer (I Was Born a Woman) by the writer and poet Maya Cú.
Fundación Paiz para la Educación y la Cultura presents the XXIII Paiz Art Biennial, the most important contemporary art event in Central America, which has been exhibited free of charge for 25 years. This biennial edition will be displayed from July 13 to 30 in five venues. Three venues are located in Guatemala City: Centro Cultural de España (CCE), the Centro Cultural Municipal Álvaro Arzú Irigoyen, and Portal de la Sexta, and two in Antigua Guatemala: the Centro de Formación de la Cooperación Española (CFCE) and La Nueva Fábrica.
The curatorial team is made up of Francine Birbragher-Rozencwaig and Juan Canela. The Shared Knowledge Program, an educational component of the Biennial, is curated by Esperanza de León.
The themes, ideas, participants, and structure have been taking shape in a collective work process with a curatorial assembly convened by Minia Biabiany (Guadeloupe); Marilyn Boror Bor (Guatemala); Minia Biabiany (Guadeloupe); Marilyn Boror Bor (Guatemala); Duen Neka’hen Sacchi (Argentina); Juana Valdés (Cuba-United States).
The Biennial highlights the work of five pioneering women artists who opened paths and became the inspiration, anchor, and starting point of the event: Margarita Azurdia, Ana Mendieta, Fina Miralles, María Thereza Negreiros, and Cecilia Vicuña.
30 participants (artists and collectives)
Carolina Alvarado (Mexico-Guatemala); Margarita Azurdia (Guatemala); Minia Biabiany (Guadeloupe); Marilyn Boror Bor (Guatemala); Zoila Andrea Coc-Chang (Guatemala-United States); Josué Castro (Guatemala); Roberto Escobar Raguay (Guatemala); Laia Estruch (Spain); Adler Guerrier (Haiti-United States); Ixqcrear Collective- Elena Caal Hub, Ixmukane Quib Caal and Ixmayab’ Quib Caal – (Guatemala); Yavheni de León (Guatemala); Ana Mendieta (Cuba-United States); Fina Miralles (Spain); Helen Mirra (United States); Julieth Morales (Colombia); Verónica Navas González (Costa Rica) ; María Thereza Negreiros (Brazil-Colombia); La Nueva Cultura Material (The New Material Culture)- Bryan Castro and Valeria Leiva – (Guatemala); Itziar Okariz (Spain); Eliazar Ortiz Roa (Dominican Republic); Lourdes de la Riva (Guatemala); Sallisa Rosa (Brazil); Duen Neka’hen Sacchi (Argentina); Ix Shells (Panama); Tz´aqol Collective- Victor Manuel Barillas and Marta Tuyuc Us – (Guatemala); Tz’aqaat Collective- Cheen (Cortez) and Manuel Chavajay (Guatemala); Juana Valdés (Cuba-United States); Cecilia Vicuña (Chile); Martín Wannam (Guatemala-United States); Risseth Yangüez Singh (Panama).
i drank words immersed in dreams*
The title of the XXIII Paiz Art Biennial is a fragment of a poem by Maya Cú, one of the referents of Mayan poetry in Guatemala, whose body of work represents the search for identity establishing a feminine genealogy and a heritage in resistance. Her verses accompany the construction of this project.
The conversations and meetings have been braided around the existing links between language, body, and territory since the first shared intuitions. Writing, orality, story, corporality, presence, movement, community, territoriality, landscape, nature, and community are some concepts that emerge from these relationships, articulating narratives that challenge hegemonic stories and imagining futures that delve into the possibilities of lives in common.
In a statement the curatorial team asserts:
The project is built from a polyphony of voices that emerge from the dialogue with the participating artists and the reflections that emanate from their work. These voices and gestures emerge from different territories and evolve while experimenting with what is close to articulate meeting spaces. There is an unmistakable will to work from undefined certainties born from intuitive spaces and diverse spiritualities. The exhibited works, displayed in different venues in Guatemala City and Antigua, delve into linguistic, poetic, dreamlike, telluric, political, psychic, emotional, or affective territories in which materialities, subjectivities, and subjectivities, and desires take shape from the conviction of building bridges.
Shared Knowledge Program
The Shared Knowledge Program is the educational component of I drank words submerged in dreams, the XXIII Paiz Art Biennial. Curated by Esperanza de León, it unfolds in a plan of mediation resources designed to introduce the biennial in a gradual shift that, from less to more complexity, brings its themes closer to the public. Prioritizing dialogues, symbolic actions, and content generation, and using various resources, this program exceeds the temporality of the exhibition, understanding the biennial as a project whose complexity is developed with different formats, intensities, vibrations, and actions. Three words are taken from the biennial’s title as the main ideas on which to slide in this component. They resonate as temporal division and depth of focus: DREAMS, WORDS, AND DIVE IN. Each word becomes an arm and a period, generating a structuring idea for the proposal.
*The project’s title is a verse belonging to the poem Nací mujer (I Was Born a Woman) by the writer and poet Maya Cú.
Centro Cultural de España
The Centro Cultural de España is one of Guatemala’s most dynamic cultural institutions. In June 2013, to actively participate in rehabilitating the Historical Center, its headquarters moved to the building once occupied by the Lux Theater, a patrimonial space and an example of art deco architecture from the 1930s of great importance for being at the time the most modern theater in the country.
Edificio Lux, 6a. Avenida 11-02, 2º piso, zona 1
Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Centro Cultural Municipal Álvaro Arzú Irigoyen
The construction of this emblematic building in the capital’s Historic Center began in 1938. It was designed by Rafael Pérez de León and Enrique Riera, who also participated in the design and construction of the Palacio Nacional de la Cultura during the government of General Jorge Ubico Castañeda.
7a av. 11-67 zona 1
Hours: Monday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Portal de la Sexta
It is a pedestrian walkway that connects the Paseo de la Sexta with the Paseo Jocotenango. It was built to promote social and cultural development in the city’s historic center, revitalizing a public space and offering safe passage for passers-by.
6ª Avenida entre 6ª y. 8ª Calle, zona 1
Monday to Sunday: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Centro de Formación de la Cooperación Española (CFCE)
In Antigua Guatemala, the CFCE is one of the four entities that are part of the Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo (AECID), an entity in charge of coordinating and executing cooperation activities in the field-specific training at international level.
6ª Av. Norte entre 3ª y 4ª Calle (Antiguo Colegio de la Compañía de Jesús), Antigua Guatemala
Monday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
La Nueva Fábrica
La Nueva Fábrica is the first multidisciplinary cultural center of its kind in Antigua, Guatemala, and part of the arts and culture program of the New Roots Foundation.
Plazuela Central de Santa Ana #55, Aldea Santa Ana, Antigua Guatemala
Wednesday to Sunday: 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Sobre la Bienal de Arte Paiz
The Biennial is a cultural project of the Fundación Paiz, a non-profit entity that for more than forty years has dedicated itself to supporting the development of education and culture in Guatemala with the conviction that art is an essential tool for social development.
The Paiz Art Biennial is a pioneer in the projection and development of art in Central America. Through exhibitions and events, the Biennial presents to the public, for free, various ways of accessing knowledge of contemporary art, bringing together artists, curators, critics, and local and international personalities.