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Announcing the Curators of Biennale Arte 2024: The National Pavilion of Saudi Arabia Unveils Its Team

Jessica Cerasi, Maya El Khalil, and Shadin AlBulaihed have been appointed curators for the National Pavilion of Saudi Arabia at the 60th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. This prestigious opportunity, commissioned by the Visual Arts Commission under the Ministry of Culture, underscores the diverse talents and expertise of the curatorial team. Collaborating with artist Manal AlDowayan, they will craft an installation for the Biennale Arte 2024, themed "Stranieri Ovunque - Foreigners Everywhere" and curated by Adriano Pedrosa. With their extensive curatorial backgrounds, Cerasi, El Khalil, and AlBulaihed are poised to deliver a compelling showcase at this year's national pavilion.

Cerasi's collaboration with AlDowayan on the participatory artwork "From Shattered Ruins, New Life Shall Bloom" at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York in 2023 highlights her commitment to contemporary art from the Arab Gulf region. Based in Abu Dhabi, Cerasi's previous roles as Assistant Curator for the 58th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia and the Biennale of Sydney reflect her seasoned experience. Her writings on the topic also demonstrate her support for broadening the appreciation of modern art.

Longtime collaborator El Khalil is an independent curator with a global reach; together, they curated AlDowayan's first solo exhibition in Saudi Arabia in 2013. As the founding director of Athr Gallery in Jeddah, El Khalil played a pivotal role in bridging international art with the Gulf region. Her contributions to AlDowayan's participatory practice underscores her commitment to fostering cultural exchange.

AlBulaihed, in her role as the assistant curator for the Pavilion from Misk Art Institute, is dedicated to delving into the intricate local stories woven within Saudi Arabia's diverse cultural landscape. Her participation in the first Saudi Arabian pavilion at the 16th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia is further evidence of her commitment to promoting Saudi artists globally.

The curators express their enthusiasm for collaborating with AlDowayan to present narratives from Saudi Arabia to an international audience. AlDowayan's reputation for community engagement and documenting societal changes resonates locally and globally, making her an ideal collaborator for this endeavor.

Dina Amin, CEO of the Visual Arts Commission, praises the curatorial team's expertise, highlighting their ability to amplify Saudi talent on an international platform like the Biennale Arte.

The theme and storyline guiding AlDowayan's installation will be unveiled in due course. The exhibition will run from April 20 to November 24, 2024, at the National Pavilion of Saudi Arabia's dedicated space in Venice, Italy.

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