João Laia

(this page was last updated in December 2020)

Lives and works in Helsinki, Finland
PIPA 2017 Nominating Committee member 

João Laia is the chief curator for exhibitions at Kiasma – National Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinki.  He has a background in social sciences, film theory and contemporary art; his projects explore the embedded relations between social structures, technology and representation. Recent projects include Máscaras (Masks) co-curated with Valentinas Klimašauskas and 10000 Years Later Between Venus and Mars (2017-18) at Oporto City Hall Gallery,  In Free Fall (2019) at CaixaForum, Barcelona, Vanishing Point (2019) at Cordoaria Nacional, Lisbon, Drowning in a Sea of Data (2019) and Transmissions from the Etherspace (2017) at La Casa Encendida, Madrid, foreign bodies (2018) at P420, Bologna,  H Y P E R C O N N E C T E D (2016) at MMOMA – Moscow Museum of Modern Art; or Hybridize or Disappear (2015) at MNAC – National Museum of Contemporary Art in Lisbon. Laia co-curated the 19th and 20th editions of the contemporary art festival Videobrasil (2014–18) at SESC Pompeia, São Paulo. Other exhibitions, performance programs and screenings were held at CCCB – Xcèntric (Barcelona), ZDB  –  Galeria Zé dos Bois and MAAT – Museum for Art, Architecture and Technology (Lisbon), DRAF – David Roberts Art Foundation, Delfina Foundation, South London Gallery and Whitechapel Gallery (London), Parque Lage (Rio de Janeiro), Moderna Museet (Stockholm) and Kurzfilmtage – International Short Film Festival Oberhausen. In 2012-13 Laia attended the post-graduate research program CuratorLab at Konstfack, Stockholm and in 2014 was part of the curatorial residency of Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin. He edited A Multiple Community (SESC publishing 2018), co-edited Daniel Steegmann Mangrané’s monograph Spiral Forest (Mousse Publishing 2018) and writes for magazines such as Flash Art, frieze, Mousse, Spike or Terremoto. Together with Klimašauskas, Laia is co-curating the 14th Baltic Triennial at the CAC in Vilnius (2021).

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