Vincent Meessen at the 16th Bienal de Cuenca: Maybe Tomorrow


Vincent Meessen presents his historical photography project Cuerpo Diplomatico, at the Biennale of Cuenca, Ecuador
08/12/2023 – 08/03/2024


Twenty years ago, Universal Embassy was founded in Brussels. It became a place where undocumented migrants from more than fifteen countries around the world fought for their papers. With the help of volunteers from various sectors of civil society, they developed methods of mutual aid, including legal support and raising public awareness. Vincent Meessen, who was one of the founding members of this collective, is exhibiting for the first time a series of photographic portraits he took of some of the Embassy’s first residents. He is also exhibiting various archive documents from this struggle in the early 2000s. The embassy welcomed, among others, a family from Ecuador – including three young children – which was photographed back then in 2001.


Meessen’s installation relates the story of the Ecuadorean family to two other figures: Rafael Correa, the former president of the country who was granted – for the first time in history – political refugee status in Belgium (2017) after a judicial procedure in his country. It was under his presidency that Ecuador granted Julian Assange – the second public figure – diplomatic refugee status and allowed him to seek refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London (2012-2019).


Curator: Ferran Barenblit


Adelita Husni-Bey [Italy]
Alexander Apóstol [Venezuela]
Amalia Pica [Argentina]
Carlos Garaicoa [Cuba]
Christian Jankowski [Germany]
Clemencia Echeverri [Colombia]
Cherani Collective [Mexico]
Democracy Pavilion [Europe]
Fernando Sánchez Castillo [Spain]
Forensic Architecture [United Kingdom]
Fredi Casco [Paraguay]
Gabriela Rivadeneira Crespo [Ecuador]
Gary Vera Z. [Ecuador]
Iván Argote [Colombia]
Jill Magid [USA]
Leo Moyano [Ecuador]
Magdalena Jitrik [Argentina]
Marcelo Expósito [Spain]
María Rosa Jijón [Ecuador]
Marilá Dardot [Brazil]
Max De Esteban [Spain]
Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa [Guatemala]
Osman Khan [USA]
Patricio Palomeque [Ecuador]
Pilvi Takala [Finland]
Sandra Gamarra [Peru]
Teresa Margolles [Mexico]
Vincent Meessen [Belgium]
Voluspa Jarpa [Chile]


Read more at Bienal de Cuenca…