Sharjah Biennial 9

Various Venues

“PROVISIONS FOR THE FUTURE,” the ninth edition of the Sharjah Biennial, raised a host of unsettling if necessary questions typically repressed by the protocols of the global biennial circuit—though in light of the stated ambitions for the show, this might not at first appear to be the case. Organized by artistic director Jack Persekian and chief curator Isabel Carlos, “Provisions for the Future” seemingly mined familiar thematic terrain, and with a deceptively optimistic inflection. “The pursuit of happiness,” Carlos writes in the rainbow-colored tome that is the catalogue, “is an important motivation for humanity to relocate itself from one place to another. In such relocation, notions of utopia and the future . . . play a major role.” The work of some sixty artists, running the gamut from the emerging (Haris Epaminonda, Hayv Kahraman) to the emerged (Lawrence Weiner), was pressed into

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