On September 18, 2017, the 7th Moscow International Biennale of Contemporary Art, which for the first time in its history will last for four whole months, opened at the New Tretyakov Gallery. The Aksenov Family Foundation has become a partner of the main project of the biennial "Clouds Forests".
52 artists from 25 countries became participants in the Main Project: Belgium, Great Britain, Germany, Hong Kong, Denmark, Israel, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Iraq, Iran, Iceland, Spain, Cyprus, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Singapore, USA, Turkey, Finland, France, Switzerland, Japan. Among the participants are Matthew Barney and Olafur Eliasson, who created new works especially for the Moscow Biennale, and the famous Icelandic singer and artist Bjork.
The curator of the Biennale this year was Yuko Hasegawa. Since 2006, she has been the chief curator of the Tokyo Museum of Contemporary Art. Hasegawa has participated in the preparation of many international exhibitions, having curated the 7th Istanbul Biennale (2001), co-curated the 4th Shanghai Biennale (2002) and the 4th Seoul International Media Art Biennale (2006), having served an artistic advisor to the 12th Venice Architectural Biennale (2010), co-curated the 29th Biennale in São Paulo (2010) and curated the 11th Biennale in Sharjah (2013). Over the years, she has served on numerous supervisory boards and juries, including the jury for the 48th Venice Biennale (1999). In 2003, Yuko Hasegawa was Commissioner of the Japan Pavilion at the 50th Venice Biennale.
In her interview with The Art Newspaper Russia, Hasegawa explained the choice of theme for the Moscow Biennale:
In the concept of the biennale, I am most attracted by the opportunity to talk about high sensitivity, about new ideas in the field of information technology and communications that appear in contemporary cloud spaces. ... The emergence of cloud spaces has greatly influenced art as well. Therefore, I want to focus on their capabilities: how they can exist, how they create new sensations and new ways of perception, how they form a new media reality and become a new kind of future. It is interesting even to just think about this, about a new kind of forest — about the forest of human thought; get feedback, start a more positive discussion, new cooperation — create another ecosystem, where both the forest and the cloud act as a metaphor for human communication.