FEMSA Biennial evolves with innovative platform - FEMSA
Press Release

FEMSA Biennial evolves with innovative platform

Monterrey, N.L. October 27, 2015.– As a response to international trends, the FEMSA Biennial has evolved to become one of the most innovative art contests in the country by adding a Curatorial Program to its original format, which will be composed of three axis: a residency, an exhibition and a public program under the name “Poetics of Decrease. How to Live Better with Less?”, whose proposal is to present profound questions about our lifestyle in relation to the environment and the economy of consumption. 

Under this new approach, in which the development and interaction of the creators will be promoted, the contest will have the artistic direction of Willy Kautz, who leads and proposes a pragmatic model whose purpose is to generate consolidation processes to create an artistic community through the dialogue between artists and invited experts, that will allow the development of innovative proposals that stimulate research and production. 

“We are very proud to present the new FEMSA Biennial edition, because it marks an evolution and a precedent in Mexican art contests. Our commitment is to create a cultural legacy that contributes to education so we can positively transform our communities. Thus, in FEMSA we want to encourage, strengthen and disseminate the news about these artistic activities so that as many people as possible can enjoy them”, said FEMSA’s Corporate Affairs Director, Genaro Borrego Estrada.

One of the axis of the new FEMSA Biennial, held in collaboration with the Council for Culture and Arts of Nuevo Leon (CONARTE), is the Curatorial Program, which will be framed by the tittle “Poetics of Decrease. How to Live Better with Less?”, which refers to an ecological trend that has been adopted by various disciplines of knowledge that establish a critical view on the economy of unlimited growth, referring to the limited resources our planet has. This proposal is divided in three platforms:  

•    The Residence: Known as Common Place, it is a house enabled as residence for national and international artists, invited to participate under the selection guidelines of the XII FEMSA Biennial Curatorial Program team. The residence space will also operate as a center of documentation and consultation for the theme addressed by the curatorial program. 

Events such as meetings, talks and exhibitions by local artists will be held at Common Place. Their goal will be to create a place to review, document and exhibit contemporary artists’ productions. 

Through this space located at Obispado in Monterrey City, the audience will be able to approach and learn about the artistic projects’ processes, as well as accompany the preparatory stages of the works that will be part of the XII FEMSA Biennial, which will be presented at Center of the Arts on October, 2016.

•    Exhibition: It will consist of the artworks selected through the contest, projects produced by the artists staying at Common Place Residence and by local artists, and a special selection of works from FEMSA Collection and international artists. 

•    Public Program: It will take place parallel to FEMSA Biennial exhibition: from October 2016 to January 2017. The curatorial team will conduct various activities such as seminars, workshops, films and talks, which will take place at the Center of the Arts of Monterrey. The purpose of this program is to promote the reflection and learning through the interaction of specialists with the public in general. 

“The curatorial program is conceived as a platform for processes and questioning about the relationship between economics, ethics and aesthetics. Through a series of questions, this program aims to bring to light, poetic reflections on how we approach natural resources”, said FEMSA Biennial’s Curatorial Program Artistic Director, Willy Kautz. 

FEMSA Biennial is an art contest instituted in 1992 with the purpose of recognizing, strengthen, stimulate and disseminate artistic creation in Mexico. 

From this year on, apart from coming up with a new format, the contest transforms itself and changes its name to FEMSA Biennial. This restructuring proposal responds to the need to address the current discussions about the biennials’ format, and aims to promote reflection on the contributions of Latin-American art to both the history and theory of art and the culture. 

One of FEMSA’s purpose is to promote education and culture in Mexico, and for over 24 years, through the Biennial it has had 24 thousand 572 registered art works through the participation of more than 9,000 talented creators. Also, in these two decades the Biennial has been in a constant state of evolution in order to meet the needs and expectations of the creators and the community. To this day, more than 100 artworks participant of this event have joined FEMSA Collection. 

Katzir Meza, CONARTE’s President, said: “For Nuevo Leon’s Government and CONARTE in particular, collaborating with FEMSA in such a prominent project in the field of contemporary art in Mexico, represents an alliance of great significance in promoting the art of local and national artists, both by the level of quality of the Biennial as for its social impact and the contribution projected to society in general nationwide. Without a doubt, for more than 20 years, the event has been a great showcase for promoting artists and their work, reaffirming the premise of collaboration between public and private institutions for the benefit of the community, as well as improving our quality of life through culture”. 

The contest gives out two Acquisition Awards of $200,000 pesos for each of the categories: two-dimensional and three-dimensional. Additionally, there will be an Acquisition Fund of selected artworks and the College of Art and Design in Saint-Etienne, France, through the French Alliance of Monterrey, will give out two cultural residences, one for each of the artists who get honorable mention in each format; these institutions have collaborated with FEMSA Biennial in a committed way for several years now.

Thanks to the partnership between FEMSA and CONARTE, the XII FEMSA Biennial will be showing at the Center of the Arts Monterrey, inside Fundidora Park, from October 13, 2016.

For more information about the announcement of the contest and the curatorial program of XII FEMSA Biennial, you can visit www.bienalfemsa.com 



The Council for Culture and Arts of Nuevo Leon is a public agency of the State Government that aims to ptomote and encourage artistic expression, popular culture and the various manifestations that tend to the preservation and enrichment of culture in Nuevo Leon; protect, preserve and disseminate the cultural heritage of the state; and promote the cultural values of Nuevo Leon’s society.

About FEMSA Biennial

FEMSA Biennial is a visual arts contest instituted in 1992 with the purpose of recognizing, strengthen, stimulate and disseminate artistic creation in Mexico. Its positioning throughout the years has given it recognition as the most important visual arts contest of the country, becoming increasingly prestigious internationally. 

About  FEMSA

FEMSA is a leading company participating in the beverage industry with Coca-Cola FEMSA, the largest franchise bottler of Coca-Cola products in the world; and in the beer industry, through its ownership of the second largest equity stake in Heineken, one of the worlds leading brewers with operations in over 70 countries. FEMSA participates in the retail sector with FEMSA Comercio, which operates various small-format chain stores including OXXO. Through FEMSA Negocios Estratégicos, the company offers logistic services, point-of-sales cooling solutions, and plastic solutions for FEMSA’s companies and external customers.

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