Contour Biennale 8 departs from the historic grounds of the Great Council, established in Mechelen during the fifteenth century; an emblematic reminder of the court architecture that first sought to address the Low Countries through rational jurisprudence. Here, law was not only spoken but enacted as a regional force across Dutch, German, and French territories. The modern world brought together through the Western system of nation-states is intrinsically tied to the progression of European law and enlightenment principles of rationality around legal representation. From the vestiges of this judicial infrastructure, the biennale investigates the field of social justice and its implements as media archaeology, such that justice itself is considered a “medium” that is simultaneously a performative, ethical, and aesthetic operation.
The exposition is held throughout Mechelen from March 11 until May 21st. Natasha Ginwala is the intendant for this very special event with the work of some 25 artists and collectives.