Kochi: Awestruck by the inspiring works at the ongoing Kochi Muziris Biennale, State Culture minister K. C. Joseph today said 'government and society are obliged to keep it going'.
The minister arrived at the main KMB venue with his wife Sarah Joseph, who grew up in Fort Kochi, the hub of the 108-day festival, and Congress party colleagues. Bose Krishnamachari and curator Jitish Kallat took the team around the exhibits at Aspinwall House on an hour-long tour.
The minister lauded Kochi Biennale Foundation for "bringing the world to Kerala" and for "giving the people a chance to experience the changes in the art world".
The second edition of the biennale has already made "hopeful improvements" and attracted worldwide attention, he added. "The KBF has put up remarkable installations with the limited facilities here. I congratulate them for it", he said.
The minister expressed regret that due to the state's difficult fiscal position, the biennale could not get more of a financial backing from the government. Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has already suggested that it was important to support the biennale, he recalled. 'What the government can do, we will do. A big part of our state's revenue comes from tourism, and the biennale has been a morale booster for this sector too', the minister said.
Over the year-end holiday season, KMB 14 venues have seen a spike in visitor numbers, clocking nearly 60,000 visitors since the festival opened to the public on Dec 13, mainly featuring 100 artworks by 94 artists from India as well as abroad.