Texas Biennial 2024 Curators Announced; Open Call Launched

by Jessica Fuentes February 18, 2024

Big Medium, in partnership with the Blaffer Art Museum with KADIST San Francisco and DiverseWorks, has named Erika Mei Chua Holum, Ashley DeHoyos Sauder, and Coka Treviño as co-curators of the 2024 Texas Biennial. Learn more about the curators below, via biographies provided by Big Medium.

Side-by-side photographs of curators Erika Mei Chua Holum, Ashley DeHoyos Sauder, and Coka Treviño.

Erika Mei Chua Holum, Ashley DeHoyos Sauder, and Coka Treviño

Established in 2005 by the Austin-based nonprofit Big Medium, the Texas Biennial is an independent survey of contemporary art in the state. This year marks the eighth edition of the event, making it the longest-running state biennial in the U.S. (though it has occasionally skipped a year or two between iterations). Texas-based artists and those with strong ties to the state who do not currently live here are invited to apply.

Applicants should submit artwork or projects created between 2020 and 2024 that have not been shown more than twice in Texas since 2020. Artworks of any scale and in any medium will be considered. Performance or installation works that have not been physically realized can be submitted with a written description of the work. 

The open call is an opportunity for artists to submit their work to be considered for the biennial and adjacent programming. The main exhibition will be hosted at the Blaffer Art Museum, and according to the Texas Biennial website, other selected works may be presented “as part of programming or exhibitions in partner spaces such as Lanecia Rouse Tinsley Gallery at Holy Family HTX, Sawyer Yards, The Journey HTX, Big Medium, Throughline Collective, Anderson Center for the Arts, Houston Climate Justice Museum, DiverseWorks, and Blaffer Art Museum at the University of Houston.”

Applications will be accepted through Sunday, March 31 at 11:59 p.m. CST. Exhibitions and programming are planned to begin in mid-September. Learn more and submit your work for the 2024 Texas Biennial here

Though a title has not yet been released for the Texas Biennial exhibition, the curators have shared the following joint statement regarding the themes:

“Texas is a constructed territory. The inflows and outflows of changing borders, occupations, and boundaries shape the formation of communities and their participants. The 2024 Texas Biennial explores the overlapping and amorphous forms of cultural production and cross-pollination through the rising and falling of systems and structures drawn across people, land, and water. With particular attention to artistic process, practice, and participation, the biennial centers on performance, gathering, poetry, cultural preservation, and visual art shaped by collectives and community involvement. We look to artists to articulate a means of liberation.”

Erika Mei Chua Holum is the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Assistant Curator at the Blaffer Art Museum at the University of Houston. Recent and forthcoming projects at the Blaffer include Makeshift Memorials, Small Revolutions with KADIST San Francisco (2024), and solo exhibitions with John Guzman (2023), Reynier Leyva Novo (2024), and Cian Dayrit (2024). She organizes Ecofictions and Understories (2023-24), a city-responsive curatorial program to speculate potential worlds for gathering, resisting, and regeneration in artistic practices in conjunction with the exhibition Climate Migration with the Houston Climate Museum supported by the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts. 

With support from the Idea Fund, Ms. Chua Holum launched the Sahara Dust Residency in 2024, a summer residency program activated by forms of knowledge-sharing across the temporary and migratory region created by Saharan dust clouds. They have contributed to projects and exhibitions globally, such as Majority Rule: Myth-making and survival strategies from AAPI artists at Sanman Studios (2023), makibaka! Fifty Years of Filipino-American Youth Activism at Alief Art House (2021), Duro Olowu: Seeing Chicago at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (2020), the Second Edition of the Lagos Biennial in Nigeria (2019), and Obscura Festival of Photography in Malaysia (2018). Ms. Chua Holum holds an MA in Museum and Exhibition Studies from the University of Illinois Chicago, a Masters in Library and Information Science from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and is completing a PhD in Art History at Rice University.

Ashley DeHoyos Sauder is a curator at DiverseWorks, where she organizes a full range of visual, performing, and public arts programming. Her focus is on intersectional artists and speculative futures as they relate to history and the environment. Her recent projects include: A Portrait of Houston, a film and performance collaboration with French artists Jocelyn Cottincin, and French Choreographer Emmanuelle Huynh; an installation and performance of Lisa E. Harris: D.R.E.A.M Away to Afram; Overlapping Territories; Virginia Grise: Rasgos Asiaticos; and online projects Visionary Futures, Sarah Dittrich: The Tender Interval, and the performance Jefferson Pinder: Fire & Movement

Ms. DeHoyos Sauder received a BFA from Sam Houston State University (2013) and an MFA in Curatorial Practice from Maryland Institute College of Art (2016). Outside of her curatorial role, she enjoys teaching Museum and Gallery Management as part of the Museum Certificate program at University of Houston’s MA in Art Leadership program and serving as steering committee member for Houston’s BIPOC Arts Network and Fund, and as a 2023 – 2024 National Performance Network Partner Advisory Council. Ms. DeHoyos Sauder is a recipient of the Andy Warhol Curatorial Research Fellowship, Teiger Foundation, and Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation for curatorial lead research and programs. Her upcoming projects include a performance Memory Fleet: A Return to Matr by Houston-based artists Jasmine Hearn, and group exhibition River on Fire.

Coka Treviño is the Founder and Curator of The Projecto, an Austin based organization fostering cultural connections between Latin America and the US. She is the Curator and Director of Programming at Big Medium, an Austin-based nonprofit art organization dedicated to advancing artists’ careers. Additionally, she does Arts Programming at Soho House Austin. Her curatorial practice focuses on uplifting diverse artistic communities with an innovative and respectful approach to culture and contemporary social issues. Her work attempts to intertwine art, music, and social perspectives as often as possible, always with diversity, equity, and inclusion at the forefront of the projects.

Ms. Treviño has worked with ArtPrize as a Curator and Outreach Specialist. She has co-curated events and exhibitions for the Blanton Museum of Art, the Mexican American Cultural Center, the SXSW Art Program, and the Gallery at Austin’s Central Library. Previously, she supported the Exhibition department at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Monterrey, managed and curated exhibitions from the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León art collection in Monterrey, and served as Curatorial Assistant for the Universal Forum of Cultures in Monterrey. She co-curated a concert with the Austin Symphony, highlighting women of color composers, adding these pieces to the Symphony’s repertoire. She co-produced the project Translating Community History, a set of two books and hours of storytelling by Black and Latinx neighborhoods in Austin, which was recognized by the Preservation Merit Awards in 2023. Her Spanglish Series was featured by the Mexican American Cultural Center. She co-curated and managed Golden Hornet’s MXTX, a gender-balanced album, concert series, and open-source audio sample library to build cultural bridges between the U.S. and Mexico.

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