April 23 & 24th, 2016

The inaugural Bombay Beach Biennale year 0 circulated around "the art of decay." Academics, artists, entertainers, and locals were invited to join the Biennale and create works that explored themes and conversations around this concept.

Academic: Kim Stringfellow, Robert Pippin, Mark Wrathall, Andrew Winer, Geoff Dyer

Art: Anonymous, Greg Haberny, Robert Stivers, The Most Famous Artist, Brandy Eve Allen, Matt Ross, Josh Franklin, Sandy White, Tao Ruspoli, Kate Feld

Entertainment: The Bombay Beach Drive-in, Moderna

The Experience

“What a privilege it was to be at the first Bombay Beach biennale. It was a wonderful mix of the serious and the silly, the desolate and the beautiful, of guests and residents. It was tremendous fun and I'm sure that years from now people will be boasting about having been here at the beginning, in the way that they talk now about the first Baker beach Burns -well, I know I will anyway.”  — Geoff Dyer, award-winning film critic and literary writer

"What I knew about Bombay Beach? Nothing. I saw a photo and said, I'm in. My entire artist's narrative is about re-appropriating things out of the ashes, and seeing this place-- it's like a time capsule that needs to be saved, not by tearing down and rebuilding, but by preservation of this uniqueness. And believe it or not, I'm creating landscape paintings, embracing the environment for what it is. I've never seen a place like this, ever, and now, I'm in love with it." — Greg Haberny, internationally-exhibited Artist

“I’ve always admired Fellini films, but I never thought that I would, in effect, play a part in one. The creativity, energy, passion, and intelligence evident in those films and in the Biennale was surprising and stimulating at every turn.  I have never taken part in such an original and spontaneous happening, and have never been so moved by a site, at once the past and a possible future.” — Robert Pippin, world-renowned philosophy professor at the University of Chicago

“The Bombay Beach Biennale was a celebratory Felliniesque staging of art, philosophy and music along with quirky happenings including live opera on the shores of the Salton Sea at sunset. The weekend was full of surprises including engaging ruminations on the physical and moral state of decay, which is, of course, why the tiny village of Bombay Beach is so fascinating in the first place. Area locals along with first time venturers who gathered here were equally engaged and hopeful for Bombay Beach’s cultural future." — Kim Stringfellow, writer and professor at San Diego University

"I look for beauty in things that are unsettling to a society-constrained mind.  Chaos,decay, unpredictability, death, erosion: these are natural and necessary processes that should be embraced and not feared.  I strive to include them in my art at all costs.Bombay Beach is the embodiment of these processes and set the stage for art that I am proud of and powerful inspiration from all of the fellow artists I had the pleasure of witnessing create." —Matt Ross, artist

“The Bombay Beach Biennale was art at the boundary of nature and artifice.  It was absurd and transcendent, serious and sensuous, earthy and intellectual.  The Bombay Beach Biennale was a singularity; I hope it happens again soon.” — Mark Wrathall, professor of philosophy, UC Riverside


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