Under the motto WE ARE HERE!, the 2nd Roma Biennale will develop the vision of deep solidarity in a radically diverse and just society. In five chapters, on the occasion of five different anniversaries related to the history and present reality of Romani people, 50 artists will explore five different aspects of BEING HERE from the perspective of the racialised, oppressed and marginalised: self-confession, resistance and resilience, survival, commemoration and, finally, the very fact of existence. The Biennale will feature a public poster campaign, online and open-air events as well as interventions in public spaces over the course of almost eight months.
The ongoing pandemic makes inequalities in wealth, political and social power relations and chances to survive even more visible and urgent than before, and those who were already living precariously before the pandemic are now often on the brink of survival. At the same time, Germany and Europe fail again and again to combat right-wing extremist structures within and outside the state system. Romani people, Black, Jewish, queer communities and People of Colour, especially women, are not sufficiently protected, as the right-wing terrorist murderers of Halle and Hanau showed in 2020. So the motto is: WE ARE HERE! – despite colonialism and its continuation in so-called race studies, despite National Socialism and genocides, and despite today’s antigypsyism, antisemitism and racism.
Art is not a luxury good. Especially in pandemic times and in view of the many crises in the world, culture is more necessary than ever. Art represents an opportunity for self-empowerment and solidarity with all those who are not granted security and who are excluded from participation in essential resources or are even prevented from being here by deportations. The 2nd Roma Biennale WE ARE HERE! is therefore anti-institutional, anti-elitist and participatory. It is accessible to everyone so that they can experience it in public space and online, take it home and, above all, spread it in their own neighbourhood.
Art posters will be displayed on billboards and poster sites, in shop windows and all over the urban space, they will be available to take away in bookshops, cafés, community shops and galleries, but also online for viewing and downloading worldwide. In addition to the poster gallery, the offers a range of other artworks, such as video artworks, songs and texts to accompany the poster campaign.