16 Dec 2018


HIAP Talks: Jens Hoffmann

The Curator of the Istanbul Biennial Jens Hoffmann: How To Do Things With Exhibitions: Art and Literature

In his HIAP Talk, Jens Hoffmann will talk about his recent trilogy of exhibitions based on three of the most iconic American novels of the last two-hundred years: The Wizard of Oz, Moby-Dick and Huckleberry Finn (2008–2010). Hoffmann will examine the relationship between literature, art and exhibition making and show how literature can provide us with a frame to understand the today´s political realities by looking at the past.

Over the last decades, exhibitions have become vehicles for intellectual, cultural and socio-political expression. Yet, only a few have managed to successfully achieve a particular critical insight into societal concerns regarding contemporary culture, says Hoffmann.

Jens Hoffmann is a writer, exhibition maker, and the Director of the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts in San Francisco. Hoffmann was the Director of Exhibitions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, London (2003–2007). He has curated over 30 exhibitions internationally since the late 1990s. Most recently he was co-curator of the 2nd San Juan Triennial, Puerto Rico (2009). With Adriano Pedrosa, Hoffmann is currently curating the 12th Istanbul Biennial (2011). In 2009 Hoffmann founded The Exhibitionist: A Journal for Exhibition Making.

Hoffmann is a senior lecturer at the Curatorial Practice Program of the California College of the Arts in San Francisco, a guest professor at the Nova Academia di Belle Arti in Milan and an adjunct faculty member of the Curatorial Studies Program of Goldsmiths College, University of London.

HIAP Talks is curated by Marita Muukkonen and is organised in collaboration with the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts and the Curatorial Studies Programme of Aalto University (CuMMa).