Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung Appointed Chief Curator for 2025 Bienal de São Paulo

Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung. Photo: Jana Edisonga/Fundação Bienal de São Paulo.

Renowned curator Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung has been appointed as the chief curator for the 36th Bienal de São Paulo, scheduled to take place in the latter half of 2025. This prestigious appointment marks a significant moment in the intersection of art, culture, and global discourse, as Ndikung brings his visionary approach and extensive experience to one of the world’s most influential art events.

Born in 1977 in Yaoundé, Cameroon, Ndikung’s journey spans diverse realms, from his academic pursuits in medical biotechnology to his groundbreaking contributions to the contemporary art scene. His academic background, including a doctorate from Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf/TU Berlin and a post-doctorate from Université de Montpellier, France, provides a unique foundation for his innovative curatorial practices.

Ndikung’s career trajectory is characterized by a commitment to challenging conventional boundaries and fostering meaningful dialogue within the art world. As the founding director of SAVVY Contemporary in Berlin, he transformed the space into a dynamic hub for exhibitions, performances, and discourse that transcends traditional notions of curation. Additionally, Ndikung currently serves as the director and chief curator of Berlin’s Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW), where he continues to push the boundaries of contemporary art and cultural discourse on a global scale. His global impact is evident through his involvement in renowned events such as documenta 14, the Dak’Art: African Contemporary Art Biennale, and the Venice Biennale.

Upon his appointment, Ndikung expressed his profound enthusiasm and gratitude, stating, “To say that I am happy to be appointed chief curator of Bienal de São Paulo would be an understatement. I am thrilled, honored, and humbled to embark on this journey.” He emphasized the Bienal de São Paulo’s pivotal role as a beacon of accessibility and inclusivity in the art world, noting its historic significance as a platform for diverse artistic expression.

Ndikung’s curatorial project for the 36th Bienal de São Paulo will be unveiled later this year, alongside the announcement of his esteemed curatorial team. Andrea Pinheiro, president of Fundação Bienal de São Paulo, highlighted Ndikung’s role in shaping the future of contemporary art, stating, “In his curatorial work, Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung acts as a driving force that challenges boundaries and contributes to shaping the future of global contemporary art.”

As anticipation mounts within the art world, Ndikung’s appointment reaffirms the Bienal de São Paulo’s commitment to innovation, diversity, and artistic excellence. With Ndikung’s visionary leadership, the 36th Bienal de São Paulo promises to be a platform for meaningful dialogue, artistic exploration, and societal reflection on a global scale. Artists, curators, and art enthusiasts alike eagerly await Ndikung’s transformative vision for this iconic event.

In addition to his role as chief curator, Ndikung’s appointment underscores his ongoing commitment to bridging cultural divides and fostering connections across geographical and disciplinary boundaries. Through his work as a curator, author, and biotechnologist, Ndikung continues to push the boundaries of contemporary art, challenging perceptions and reshaping the cultural landscape for generations to come.

As preparations for the 36th Bienal de São Paulo unfold, Ndikung’s leadership promises to usher in a new era of artistic exploration and innovation, further solidifying the biennial’s reputation as a leading platform for contemporary art on the global stage. With his interdisciplinary background and visionary approach, Ndikung is poised to leave an indelible mark on the cultural landscape of São Paulo and beyond.

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