Rodney Graham, Study for Rheinmetall, 2003


Biennale d’Art Contemporain

Various Venues
Sharjah United Arab Emirates
September 17–January 4

This seventh installation of the Lyon Biennale might prove to be this year’s idiosyncratic jewel. Organizers Anne Pontégnie (Brussels), Bob Nickas (New York), and Consortium curators Xavier Douroux, Franck Gautherot, and Eric Troncy (Dijon) aim to return primacy to the art, in part by ignoring the “who’s hot” expediency of other big shows. The Lyon team’s mix of around fifty artists is both curious and sound. There’s work by ’60s/’70s visionaries Betty Tompkins, Robert Grosvenor, and Gustav Metzger (with a rare Liquid Crystal projection); new films from Rodney Graham and Hiraki Sawa; and installations by Lily van der Stokker, Larry Clark, and Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster. And you really can't miss the dazzling kaleidoscope by the artists formerly known as Forcefield—it's that big.