Manifesta 15 Barcelona

Welcome to Manifesta 15 Barcelona. 

In 2024, Manifesta, the European Nomadic Biennial, will come to Barcelona and its larger Metropolitan area in Catalonia for its 15th edition. Full website coming soon! 

What is Manifesta

Manifesta, the European Nomadic Biennial, changes location every two years. Founded in the early 1990s, Manifesta rethinks the relation between culture and civic society, investigating and instigating positive social change through contemporary culture in response to, and in close dialogue with, the social sphere of the Host City and its communities.

Alternative Models

As a European biennial, we continuously critically reflect on what biennials represent, especially regarding racism, inequality and xenophobia while also considering the impact of the global pandemic, the ecological crisis and the neoliberal crisis.

About Manifesta 15 Barcelona

Manifesta 15 in Barcelona will explore innovative dynamics and pressing public debates: sovereignty as a topic and political process within the challenges of globalisation; the democratisation of public life; the defence of public space in the face of privatisation; the need to combine social progress with environmental challenges; fragility in terms of housing, the movement of people, capital, data and economic as well as ecological crises.

Frequently Asked Questions

Read more about the Q&A on Manifesta 15 Barcelona.

Organisation

Each edition of Manifesta is managed by a mix of permanent international team members and local specialists. Manifesta works from its offices in Amsterdam and the Host City.

Join the team

Keep an eye on this page and sign up to our newsletter to hear about further upcoming vacancies.

Press

Please find an overview of our press releases here.

Partners

Manifesta 15 Barcelona is made possible by the support of our partners.

Support Manifesta

Manifesta is supported by an ever-extending international network of partners including foundations, sponsors and individuals. Manifesta’s supporters share our interest in creating platforms for dialogue between art and society, exploring specific geopolitical and sociological issues and creating long-term change for cities. Manifesta is grateful to all its benefactors for their vital contributions throughout the years.

Manifesta 15 Expectation Workshops

For each edition of Manifesta, we hold expectation workshops with the intention to engage and collaborate with the artistic, cultural and civic communities from each Host City during the pre-biennial process.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the origins of Manifesta?

    Manifesta was conceived in the early 1990s as a nomadic, European biennial of contemporary art, responding to the new social, cultural and political reality that appeared in the aftermath of the Cold War. Manifesta’s first ideas were born after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 during a time of European integration. A young generation of students in the 1980s was suddenly able to move freely all-around Europe, enabling them to embrace mobility and anti-nationalism. 

    Since 1996, Manifesta has taken place in Rotterdam, Luxembourg, Ljubljana, Frankfurt, Donostia/San Sebastián, Trentino‒South Tyrol, Murcia, Genk, St. Petersburg, Zurich, Palermo and most recently Marseille. In the summer of 2022, Manifesta 14 will take place in Prishtina, Kosovo. Over the course of 14 biennials, more than 3 million people have visited Manifesta’s events and participated in its programmes. It has successfully presented artists, creative mediators and young professionals from as many as forty different countries, and in each edition, continues to innovate and reimagine contemporary cultural practices

  • Where does the name ‘Manifesta’ come from?

    “Manifestare” or “Manifesto”, meaning in Latin “make something visible”, was a conceptual idea by German Fluxus gallerist René Block, a member of our first Advisory Board who came up with the name “Manifesta”. 

  • Why does Manifesta only focus on Europe?

    Manifesta is the only European Nomadic Biennial, changing cities for each edition. Manifesta explores how the growing challenges of economic recession, migration and climate change affect the way we live, work and think. Because of its migratory existence, Manifesta is able to mount a diverse and ongoing analysis of the state of European culture. 

    Considering recent political developments, it is more important than ever to stimulate dialogue and interaction between different cultural practitioners and unite Europe through culture. 

  • What is the geographical perimeter of Manifesta 15 Barcelona?

    Manifesta 15 will take place in the capital city of Catalonia, Barcelona and in ten surrounding metropolitan cities in Catalonia. 

    The ten metropolitan cities which helped support the Bid written by the municipality of Barcelona are:

    • Badalona

    • Cornellà de Llobregat

    • Granollers

    • L’Hospitalet de Llobregat

    • Mataró

    • Prat de Llobregat

    • Sabadell

    • Sant Cugat del Vallès

    • Terrassa

    • Santa Coloma de Gramanet

  • How is Manifesta financed and how important is the financial support from public authorities?

    Manifesta is an initiative and co-organised by the International Foundation Manifesta, an independent and not-for-profit organisation with an office in Amsterdam, the Netherland. Every edition of Manifesta is co-initiated and co-organised by the International Foundation Manifesta and the edition’s Host City.

    Indeed, each new Manifesta edition is started up and fundraised individually. Manifesta15 Barcelona’s budget is shared between public funding bodies and corporate sponsors, international cultural public grant organisations and individual donations. While the Host City guarantees the basic budget, Manifesta fundraises on top of this for each edition, sometimes for more than 30-40% of the overall budget. This generates the necessary funds to develop the urban and artistic programme for the Host City and its communities, as well as long-term, sustainable projects. Manifesta is continuously looking for new partners and supporters to help create each edition, you can learn more about how to support Manifesta here.

  • How does Manifesta start in a Host City?

    Every two years, Manifesta invites European cities to develop a Bid for a future edition of Manifesta. Then, Manifesta selects a new Host City after a competitive bidding process, four to six years in advance of the edition taking place. The initial departure point for every edition of Manifesta is the Bid; for Manifesta 15 this was written and submitted by Barcelona prior to selection in December 2020. 

    Once the Host City has been selected, Manifesta sets up a partnership between the Host City and the Manifesta Foundation. The term ‘engaged autonomy’ refers to the relationship we establish with our Host Cities, this should be collaborative and full of mutual respect. This mutual commitment establishes the basis to work with city administrations beyond the single exhibition format; to challenge and improve policy and institutions in the long term. So that Manifesta can conceptualise and develop a framework for each biennial edition, Manifesta first ascertains the needs and interests of the citizens, the professional cultural sector and civil society of the Host City. Manifesta’s extensive biennial research process identifies local structures, using this to develop the goals and parameters for the biennial programme. 

  • What was in Barcelona’s Bid for Manifesta?

    In the Manifesta 15 Barcelona Bid, the City of Barcelona and the Councillor of Culture formulated the basic goal of decentralising and de-institutionalising the cultural infrastructure by creating a biennial framework which would incorporate both the city of Barcelona and ten cities from the metropolitan region. Additionally, Manifesta 15 was invited to identify a new model of collectivity for collaborations between artistic and civil communities in the periphery of Barcelona, and beyond.