The opening of the Venice Biennale is less than three months away, and the excitement about which artists will be participating in the central exhibition is building to a fever pitch in the ARTnews office. Now, Zimbabwe has been kind enough to provide some news to alleviate that tension, revealing the artists who will represent the country at the event. They are Kudzanai-Violet Hwami, Neville Starling, Georgina Maxim, and Cosmas Shiridzinomwa.
The four will be featured in a show titled “Soko Risina Musoro,” which takes its name from a poem by Zimbabwean writer Herbert Chitepo. Raphael Chikukwa, chief curator at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe, is handling curatorial duties for the pavilion, the fifth in the nation’s history. Doreen Sibanda, executive director of the National Gallery, is serving as its commissioner.
Maxim’s work addresses the histories and traditions that surround various kinds of textiles, and she cofounded the Village Unhu art space in Harare, Zimbabwe, in 2012. Shiridzinomwa paints lush, fantastical works with sociopolitical undertones. Starling works in a variety of mediums, with a focus on photography, and creates installations dealing with memory and personal history. And, last but not least, Hwami creates delicately rendered and inventively colored figurative paintings that often take the form portraits.
The Biennale opens May 11 and runs through November 24.