Rochester Contemporary Art Center and the Memorial Art Gallery have announced on Tuesday that The Rochester Biennial, which has been organized by and hosted at MAG for six years, will be organized by RoCo starting in 2017.
In the immediate future, Biennials will be based at RoCo, but they won't necessarily always be held at the art center at 137 East Avenue, says Bleu Cease, Rochester Contemporary executive director.
The Biennials will take on varied formats involving guest curators, partners, and other spaces. These exhibitions will be focused on unexpected artworks by early-career artists with a special community and participatory focus, providing visitors with unique experiences in Rochester's East End and beyond.
"We are very excited to now organize The Rochester Biennial," Cease says. "We are grateful to the MAG and excited to continue a tradition that MAG started, adding a new RoCo twist. Visitors should expect the works to be challenging and surprising -- these will be exhibitions that you won't want to miss."
In the past, one of the handful of artists featured in each Rochester Biennial was selected from the MAG's Rochester-Finger Lakes Exhibition -- a 64 year tradition showcasing the work of some of the best artists in our region. It's up in the air whether RoCo as the new curator will maintain this model.
This announcement continues the series of collaborative exhibitions and projects between Memorial Art Gallery and Rochester Contemporary Art Center. The current exhibition on display at RoCo, "Brooklyn Bridge," is presented in partnership with Memorial Art Gallery. RoCo will also partner with MAG in promoting the 15th Annual Fine Craft Show & Sale, November 7-8.
"We are thrilled that RoCo is taking advantage of this opportunity to propel The Rochester Biennial to the next level," says MAG Director Jonathan Binstock. "By continuing to share the responsibility of recognizing outstanding artistic talent in the region, the MAG and RoCo can create more opportunities for local artists to show, including solo exhibitions at the MAG."