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Kapwani Kiwanga considers value and commerce for the Canada Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2024

Paris-based, Canadian artist Kapwani Kiwanga draws on her anthropological training for pieces that criss-cross a multitude of mediums at the Venice Biennale 2024. From performance and embroidery to sculpture and installation, her work considers the political implications of material, from the impact of the agricultural revolution to the consequences of alien species crossing continents.

‘I think the starting point is just being curious,’ says Kiwanga on what unites her diverse body of work. ‘I happen to have had the privilege of being in institutions where they teach you different skills, how to understand and interact with the archive in different discourses. But then, at the same time, I wouldn’t want [my work] to be so exclusive that you would need to have that background to be able to access it. And so very early on, when I was studying, I knew that academia was probably not going to be the place where I would end up putting all of my energy, because I did want to have that broad reach.’

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