Today there are more artists working in more genres, using more varieties of material, and moving among more geographic locations than ever before. By exploring the networks that exist among contemporary artists and the work they create, the Biennial characterizes the state of American art today.
Many of the projects included in the 2008 Biennial explore fluid communication structures and systems of exchange that index larger social, political, and economic contexts, often aiming to invert the more object-oriented operations of the art market. There is an evident trend toward creating work of an ephemeral, event-based character, in the form of music and other performance, movement workshops, radio broadcasts, publishing projects, community-based activities, film screenings, culinary gatherings, or lectures. The artists included in the biennial consider each of these multiple platforms equally important even as they seek ways to complicate and transcend institutional parameters.