Klaus Biesenbach is Director of MoMA PS1 and Chief Curator at Large of The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, where he has worked on groundbreaking exhibitions such as Kraftwerk: Retrospective 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 (2012), Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present (2010), and, most recently, Nan Goldin: The Ballad of Sexual Dependency (2016). At MoMA PS1, Biesenbach has pioneered innovative formats like the large-scale, multi-venue EXPO 1: New York (2013), which spanned from Manhattan to Long Island City and the Rockaways. Prior to this, he co-founded the Kunst-Werke (KW) Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin (1991) and Berlin Biennale (1996).
In 2006, Biesenbach was named founding Chief Curator of MoMA’s newly formed Department of Media, which he broadened through performance workshops and acquisitions, and in 2009 became founding Chief Curator of the Department of Media and Performance Art. Among the many exhibitions Biesenbach has organized or co-organized internationally are VITO ACCONCI: WHERE WE ARE NOW (WHO ARE WE ANYWAY?), 1976 at MoMA PS1 (2016); Rockaway!, featuring a site-specific installation by Katharina Grosse at Fort Tilden, New York (2016); Cao Fei at MoMA PS1 (2016); Yoko Ono: One Woman Show, 1960-1971 (2015); a retrospective of Björk at MoMA (2015); Wael Shawky: The Cabaret Crusades, Zero Tolerance, and Francesco Vezzoli: Teatro Romano at MoMA PS1; Rockaway! at Fort Tilden, New York (2014); 14 Rooms with Hans Ulrich Obrist at Art Basel (2014); Korakrit Arunanondchai at MoMA PS1 and MoMA (2014); Christoph Schlingensief in Berlin and New York (2013 & 2014); EXPO1, New York and Rio de Janeiro (2013 & 2014); Cyprien Gaillard: The Crystal World at MoMA PS1 (2013); Antony and the Johnsons: Swanlights (2012); Rania Stephan (2011); Ryan Trecartin: Any Ever (2011); Francis Alÿs: A Story of Deception at MoMA and MoMA PS1(2011); Laurel Nakadate: Only the Lonely at MoMA PS1 (2011); 100 Years of Performance at the Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, Moscow (2010); Andy Warhol: Motion Pictures at MoMA PS1 (2010); Performance 9: Allora & Calzadilla at MoMA (2010); Greater New York at MoMA PS1 (2000, 2005 & 2010); Performance 4: Roman Ondak at MoMA (2009); Performance 1: Tehching Hsieh at
MoMA (2009); Jonathan Horowitz: And/Or and 100 Years (version 2) at MoMA PS1(2009); Pipliotti Rist: Pour Your Body Out (7354 Cubic Meters) at MoMA(2008); Doug Aitken: Sleepwalkers (co-commissioned with Creative Time) at MoMA(2007); Fassbinder: Berlin Alexanderplatz at MoMA PS1(2007); Douglas Gordon: Timeline and Into Me/Out of Me at MoMA and KW(2006); Regarding Terror: The Red Army Faction Exhibition at KW (2005); Shanghai Biennale (2002); Mexico City: An Exhibition about the Exchange Rate of Bodies and Values at MoMA PS1(2002); Disasters of War at MoMA PS1 (2000); Hybrid Workspace at documenta (1997); Projected Images at Venice Biennale (1995); and 37 Rooms in Berlin (1992).
Biesenbach has received International Association of Art Critics (AICA) awards for curating exhibitions Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present (2010), Pipliotti Rist: Pour Your Body Out (7354 Cubic Meters) (2008), and Fassbinder: Berlin Alexanderplatz (2007) at MoMA PS1. He received AICA awards for co-curating exhibitions Kenneth Anger at MoMA PS1(2009), 100 Years (version #2 ps1, 2009); and Roth Time: A Dieter Roth Retrospective at MoMA PS1 and MoMA QNS (2004). In March 2016, he received the Cross of the Order of Merit from the Federal Republic of Germany.