On June 21, Brooklyn-based online magazine Triple Canopy will begin a two-week residency called Perfect Strangers, in Sarajevo. While in the Bosnian capital, where several of the country's national cultural institutions were closed earlier this year due to inadequate government support, Triple Canopy will initiate a program of workshops, site-specific visual and textual works, lectures, and publishing. Artworks and other project components will examine Bosnia and Herzegovina's fraught history and national identity.
The lack of funding, as well as tensions between Bosniaks, Croats and Serbs, has thwarted the development of cultural infrastructure since the Bosnian War. Triple Canopy deputy editor Molly Kleiman spoke to A.i.A. about the residency as an opportunity to share Triple Canopy's resources and practices with artists in Sarajevo: "I wanted to bring the working method that we've used in New York to Sarajevo."
On May 12, the National Museum of Carthage, Tunisia, opens an exhibition of contemporary art for the first time, in its east wing. The exhibition, "Chkoun Ahna," which translates to "who are we?" or "about us" in Tunisian Arabic, inaugurates Carthage Contemporary, a contemporary art exhibition to be installed in a different site in the city annually. The initiation of the exhibition program, and the contemporary nature of the works included in this year's show, indicate an upsurge in new cultural production in Tunisia that followed last winter's Jasmine Revolution. Chkoun Ahna represents the country's manifold history and the ethnic, political, and cultural facets of contemporary Tunisian society.
Timo Kaabi-Linke, a German sociologist and writer living in Tunis, who organized the show with Khadija Hamdi, an art historian based in Tunis and Paris, spoke with A.i.A. about the exhibition and the cultural climate in Tunisia. Before the revolution, he said, "the whole art scene was living in a cocoon. Now there's a kind of opening."
The 7th Berlin Biennial, curated by Artur Zjimjewski, opens Friday, Apr. 27. For the exhibition, Zjimjewski, with associate curators Joanna Warsza and the riotous Russian collective Voina, selected 30 projects from nearly 6,000 submitted in an open call.
Among those headlining the exhibition is the First International Congress of the Jewish Renaissance Movement in Poland (JRMiP). The movement, created by Israeli-born artist Yael Bartana, calls for the restitution of Poland's Jewish population, which was nearly wiped out during World War II through massacre or exile. JRMiP exemplifies the social practice that Zjimjewski champions in the Biennial, as it pursues a real resolution to fraught issues concerning ethnic-national history and contemporary xenophobia.
Rona Yefman makes empathic portraits of unconventional individuals—her transgender brother; an elderly Tel Aviv man with a female alterego; and the fictional child heroine Pippi Longstocking, for instance. In her current exhibition, "Tuff Enuf," at Sommer Contemporary in Tel Aviv [through May 5], she depicts her first American subjects. The Israeli-born, New York-based Yefman describes feeling alien in both places: "I take the role of the outsider, because that's how I feel."
2012, aluminum, wood, sublimation print on polyester and concrete, 71 3/4 by 122 1/2 by 135 inches overall. Courtesy Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New Yor