Diaspora Pavilion | Venice to Wolverhampton


Diaspora Pavilion | Venice to Wolverhampton was a restaging of a selection of artworks from the Diaspora Pavilion exhibition held in Venice during the 57th Biennale at Wolverhampton Art Gallery in 2018 (10 February – 29 April 2018).

The Venice Diaspora Pavilion exhibition, curated by David Bailey and Jessica Taylor, was conceived as a challenge to the prevalence of national pavilions within the structure of an international biennale and takes its form from the coming-together of nineteen artists whose practices in many ways expand, complicate and even destabilise diaspora as term, whilst highlighting the continued relevance that diaspora as a lived reality holds today.

The pavilion formed part of the 22-month professional development programme designed to deliver mentoring and professional development by ten selected mentors for twelve UK-based emerging artists whose work engages with the topic of the diaspora. During the length of the project, these practitioners took part in group forum, one-on-one mentoring sessions and group masterclasses. The selected participants and eight of the mentors showcased their work in the Diaspora Pavilion exhibition in Venice from May to November 2017. 

All of the emerging artists participating in the Diaspora Pavilion professional development programme were invited to exhibit in Wolverhampton. The seven artists who chose to include work in the West Midlands exhibition chose to do so with a mixture of existing and new works. 

Exhibiting artists: Larry Achiampong, Kimathi Donkor, Michael Forbes, susan pui san lok, Paul Maheke, Erika Tan and Abbas Zahedi

The exhibition was curated by Jessica Taylor and was supported by Arts Council England and the Art Fund. Images courtesy Steph Hargreaves.