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Sharjah Biennial 13: Tamawuj

5 parts, October 2016 - January 2018

Exhibitions, programmes in Sharjah, Beirut, Dakar, Ramallah, Istanbul

President and Director of the Sharjah Art Foundation: Hoor Al Qasimi

Curator: Christine Tohmé


Unfolding in five parts between October 2016 and January 2018, Sharjah Biennial 13: Tamawuj extends beyond previous Sharjah Biennial formats in both space and time to encompass exhibitions, projects and education programmes in five locations.

Curated by Christine Tohme, Sharjah Biennial 13 includes a public programme in two acts, one in Sharjah (10 March - 12 June 2017) and one in Beirut (14 October 2017 - January 2018), as well as the SB13 School education programme in Sharjah.

The thematic focus of SB13, Tamawuj [rising and falling in waves], is grounded in four keywords water, crops, earth and culinary, which form the foundations of social interaction and exchange.

Just as the thematic keywords are porous and feed into one another, SB13 places researchers and interlocutors in conversation with one another, and with Sharjah. Its multi-city, multi-part programmes are envisaged as infrastructures to channel knowledge transmission and information sharing between artists, curators, editors, researchers and the general public. This fluidity of knowledge irrigates new, enduring terrains of collaboration and references the threefold meaning of Tamawuj: a rising and falling in waves; a flowing, swelling, surging or fluctuation; and a wavy, undulating appearance, outline or form.

10 March - 12 June 2017
In our extensive visual tour through the exhibition in Sharjah we show works by all participants, with texts from the SB13 Guide Book, as well as information about the venues.
You can also access the tour chapters through a special Google Map which offers the option to show your own route to each venue.

SB13 in Sharjah

List of participants

SB13 concludes in Beirut, with the fourth and final off-site project, themed around the keyword of ‘culinary’. From 14-15 October, The Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts – Ashkal Alwan organizes Upon a Shifting Plate, a weekend of discursive and performative activities, where talks, walks, workshops, cooking sessions, food tasting and other events explore the production and consumption of our eating habits and how they condition our psychological and cultural dispositions.

The culinary off-site project is followed by Act II, the concluding exhibitions and public program of SB13. On 14 October, Act II launches two exhibitions in Beirut, conceived by guest curators Reem Fadda and Hicham Khalidi at the Sursock Museum and Beirut Art Center respectively.

Information & photo tours

Off-site Projects

Conceived by four interlocutors, each engaging with one of the keywords

SB13 also features other two important components:

chip-ship, is an online repository for textual, visual and auditory data related to the four SB13 keywords. The material was collated over eight months by 15 researchers located in Dakar, Istanbul, Ramallah, Beirut and Sharjah.

tamawuj.org, the year-long publishing platform of the Biennial. Edited by Omar Berrada, Amal Issa, Kaelen Wilson-Goldie and Brian Kuan Wood, featuring essays, images, videos, experimental writings, fragmentary texts and other audio-visual materials in Arabic, English, French and Turkish, the platform functions as a site of inquiry and reflection for a wider audience.

Recipients of the Sharjah Biennial Prize 2017

Dineo Seshee Bopape, İnci Eviner, Uriel Orlow, Walid Siti. A special prize was awarded to the late Ali Jabri and will be dedicated to the conservation of his work.
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Organizer: Sharjah Art Foundation

Sharjah Biennial is organised by Sharjah Art Foundation, which brings a broad range of contemporary art and cultural programmes to the communities of Sharjah, the UAE and the region.

Since 1993, Sharjah Biennial has commissioned, produced and presented large-scale public installations, performances and films, offering artists from the region and beyond an internationally recognised platform for exhibition and experimentation.

Sharjah Art Foundation
PO Box 19989
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Website / Email

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Media contact:
Sharjah Art Foundation: Alyazeyah Al Reyaysa
alyazeyah(at)sharjahart.org  | T +971 6 544 4113

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