Ursula Biemann

There is probably no other artist who has delved so deeply into the subject of the borders between the rich countries of the North and the poorer ones of the South as Ursula Biemann. Her special interest is gender relations. The video essay Performing the Border from 1999, which is about the Mexico–USA border between Ciudad Juárez and El Paso in Texas, was the starting point for further research on global sex trafficking. For an exhibition at the Generali Foundation in Vienna 2003, Biemann and the anthropologist Angela Sanders contributed the video essay Europlex, which is about women who cross over the border into the Spanish enclave of Ceuta in Morocco. Biemann’s own contribution to the exhibition she curated called The Maghreb Connection, which toured to various venues from 2006 to 2009, consists of twelve short videos that document the trans-Saharan exodus of African migrants towards Europe. Contained Mobility (2004) is about a Belarusian biologist, who repeatedly enters the European Union illegally, and whose application for asylum is repeatedly rejected, despite the likelihood of persecution in Belarus. Since then, Biemann has engaged with the situation in Palestinian refugee camps, participated in artistic exchange with the Middle East by inaugurating in collaboration with Shuruq Harb the online platform ArtTerritories, and she is currently working on the international research project Supply Lines which investigates the global exchange of resources and water.