Panel Discussion with Jonathan Watkins


Thursday, 24th October 2019 | 18:30-20:30


A panel discussion chaired by Jonathan Watkins, Director of Ikon Gallery, Birmingham with 'Road through Kurdistan' curators Richard Wilding and Mariwan Jalal together with exhibition artists.


Jonathan Watkins has been Director of Ikon Gallery since 1999. Previously he worked for a number of years in London, as Curator of the Serpentine Gallery (1995-97) and Director of Chisenhale Gallery (1990-95).

He has curated a number of large international exhibitions including the Biennale of Sydney (1998), Facts of Life: Contemporary Japanese Art (Hayward Gallery, London 2001), Quotidiana (Castello di Rivoli, Turin 1999, Tate Triennial (2003), Shanghai Biennale (2006), Sharjah Biennial (2007), Negotiations (Today Art Museum, Beijing 2010) and the Guangzhou Triennial (2012). He was on the curatorial team for Europarte (Venice Biennale, 1997), Milano Europa 2000, (Palazzo di Triennale, Milan 2000), and Riwaq (Palestinian Biennial 2007). He curated the Iraqi Pavilion for the Venice Biennale in 2013, Floating World, Bahrain in 2017 and Small Between the Stars, Large Against the Sky, The Quebec City Biennial, 2019.

Jonathan Watkins has written extensively on contemporary art. Essays have focused on the work of Oliver Beer, Edmund Clark, Giuseppe Penone, Martin Creed, Semyon Faibisovich, Yang Zhenzhong, Noguchi Rika, Oswaldo Macia, Caro Niederer, Beat Streuli and Cornelia Parker. He was the author of the Phaidon monograph on Japanese artist On Kawara.
Jonathan Watkins has served on numerous committees and boards, most recently for Celebrating Sanctuary (2018 -) the Imperial War Museum (2011– 16), Arts Council Collection Acquisitions Committee (2011– 13) and 14-18 Now: First World War Centenary Cultural Programme (2013– 17).

In 2013 he was nominated as one of the top 100 Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy Magazine.



The event is supported by the Art Council England and organised in partnership with GULAN.