Busan Biennale

Busan Biennale 2002

15 Sep - 22 Nov 2002

The Busan Biennale 2002
Culture Meets Culture
15 September - 22 November
Artistic Director: Airyung Kim

Culture Meets Culture
The background on the establishment of the theme
The theme of the Busan Biennale 2002 'Culture meets Culture' implies the unique direction of the event. Our city Busan is the second largest city in Korea in scale but its geopolitical position has very important conditions and meanings. After going through so-called globalization in the past 1990s, we find ourselves placed in the unprecedented global network of political, economical, and cultural exchanges. We, as the residents of the port city Busan connecting the sea and the continent, cannot help thinking about the cultural responsibilities of the region we have to fulfill in the world. In the open ground called the Busan Biennale, we wish to pursue new encounters of culture, accept the cultural difference of each other, understand others more deeply, and attain true exchanges. With this we would like to expand new cultural horizons. The theme 'Culture meets Culture' was set in this context.


The human beings in the 20th century experienced the confrontation of ideologies, numerous conflicts between regions and classes and consequent violence. The ecological and cultural destruction was no better. What we have to listen closely to from those who advocate the ecological recovery of culture is that all living things, however small they may be, follow the system of symbiosis and coexistence. We have to realize all things, whether they are small or large, enjoy the dignity of life. That is from the ecosystem of the nature, We need to learn the value of harmony and rationality which is badly needed in this period. When we respect and understand without prejudice the different cultural elements of each other, as we can learn from the ecosystem of the nature, the true encounters and exchanges of culture can be materialized. Though sometimes it looks as if the law of the jungle dominates the encounters and exchanges of culture, the cooperative principles of mutual complement and laving each other are more dominant on the whole. Therefore the ideology and value the Busan Biennale need to pursue should be based on encounters and exchanges of culture we learn from the ecosystem of the nature. The encounters and exchanges of the Busan Biennale should start from the meeting of all the countries and regions with open mind. With this, mutual understanding and mutual respect for difference can be shared together and the ideal of cultural self-realization and the mutual prosperity of mankind can be achieved.

What do we want to share with each other in the open ground called Busan Biennale?

We do not want the unilateral stream of culture from the hub to the periphery. Rather, we want to raise to the equal level the voice of the culture that has been in the periphery. However, you do not need to worry about the possibility of new culture-to-culture confrontation and conflicts. We do not want any predominance, either. We just want to pursue the new equality of culture? Though our present is distorted and stained with historical vestiges of double fetters known as colonization and new colonization, which have been formed through the Japanese occupation period and the unilateral introduction of Western culture, we do not attempt ultural revenge? We just want to examine ourselves with introspective attitude for the sincere meeting with all the people. Therefore, we are going to search for a new method of meeting. First of all, we need to acknowledge the difference in the cultural horizons of each other. Difference is the proof of coexistence. We have to prepare a methodology for the slow yet true encounters of different horizons, that is, nalysis of slow encounters? Entering each other horizon, we will think about the strategy for the understanding of their logic, the patience needed for cultural harmony, and the wisdom of symbiosis. We would like to convey widely the fact the Busan Biennale can provide an open place to practice politics and analysis for the mutual encounter of culture. This also can be the reason why art should recover again.

The direction for the understanding of the meaning

'Culture meets culture' does not mean the simple transfer of culture from the hub to the periphery. Rather, it means raising the voice of the periphery equally. But still, it does not imply the confrontation or conflicts between cultures, much less predominance. Though the historical remnants of double colonization are still around us, we do not attempt cultural revenge or predominance. It is about time we should prepare ourselves for new encounters. We have to go and look for a new methodology, which is different from the current one and makes the current one unfamiliar to us. We wish that the Busan Biennale can be a place for us to think about the strategy for the understanding of other cultures, the patience needed for cultural harmony, and the wisdom of symbiosis. It can be referred to as the chinese phrase : Wha-Ei-Bu-Dong(harmonized yet not the same) of culture. We hope that harmonious coexistence of culture, difference not enforced, and ethics of meeting can be materialized through the Busan Biennale. Today, we want to declare widely the fact that art can provide an open ground for the methodology and ethics of meeting to be realized. This is also one aspect of the necessity for the recovery of art. The Busan Biennale wants to be the starting point of the declaration, different from the existing biennales representing negative authority.

The direction for the understanding of the meaning

The Busan Biennale 2002, whose aim is the meeting of culture and the harmonious unification of localism and new globalism created by localism, is trying to gather and exchange the contemporary situations of the art all over the world in one place. While pursuing the unique value of the Busan Biennale, we would like to offer a desirable model in which the West and the East can exchange mutually on an equal basis, escaping from the West-centered composition of culture. Securing the justification for the existence of the Busan Biennale is getting over contradictory structure between localism and globalism and realizing the situation of the time when isolated islands cannot exist. The realization of the situation like this means the reflection on the globalism uniting the global village into one world of life and the establishment of pan-global philanthropy and universal values transcending race and class. With this, all the regions of the world can maintain its originality and at the same time, the universal values can be created through the mutual understanding of their original homogeneity.


Alexa, Cristian

Alvim, Fernando

Aquilizan, Alfredo & Isabel

Bae, Young-Whan

Bernstrup, Tobias

Botto & Bruno

Bouschet, Gast

Brambilla, Marco

Bryce, Fernando

Byun, Dae-Yong

Chen, Zhen

Choi, Jeong-Hwa

Concejo, Joanna

Diaz, Florentino

Edwards, Benjamin

Erlich, Leandro

Farrell, Malachi

Gonzalez-Foester, Dominique

Gupta, Subodh

Hess, Nic

Hong, Seung-Hye

Hung, Tung-Lu

Hwang, Insook

Jankowski, Christian

Jung, Yeon-Do

Kang, Hong-Goo

Kawamata, Tadashi

Kim, Sooja

Kim, Sung-Soo

Kim, Young-Jin


Kwak, Soon-Gon

Latamie, Marc

Lavier, Bertrand

Lee, Mi-Kyung

Mehretu, Julie

Morris, Sarah

Nguyen-Hatsushiba, Jun

Obregon, Beltran

Pardo, Jorge

Park, Yong-Seok

Perez, Javier

Prihoda, Jiri

Rawanchaikul, Navin


Tallichet, Jude

Toguo, Barthe′le′my

Tuggar, Fatimah

Turpin, Olivier & Frank

Wyse, Dana

Yan, Pei-Ming

Yuan, Goang-Ming

Tags: Botto&bruno, Botto & Bruno, Po-i Chen, Yuan Goang-Ming, Isabel, Choi Jeong-Hwa, Ou Jin, Li Ming, Yan Pei Ming, Yan Pei-Ming, Hong Seung-Hye, Sung, Li Yan, Chen Zhen