Image: Dread Scott, On the Impossibility of Freedom in a Country Founded on Slavery and Genocide, performance still (2014).
Some Thoughts on Culture and Revolution
Thursday, March 19, 2015
ICI Curatorial Hub
401 Broadway, Suite 1620
FREE and open to the public
Last October, between the non-indictments for the killers of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, artist Dread Scott performed “On the Impossibility of Freedom in a Country Founded on Slavery and Genocide,” a reenactment of iconic Civil Rights movement images of protesters pummeled by fire hoses (1). The performance took on a new resonance, an open-ended meditation on how to resist state brutality towards black lives. A few months later, in the midst of the #blacklivesmatter movement, millions of dollars changed hands at Art Basel Miami, a celebration of arts commerce largely indifferent to that historical reckoning.
The timing of these events rendered visible a vast gap in contemporary approaches to arts and culture. Scott’s goal, to “make revolutionary art to propel history forward,” offers an alternative to the market-driven, sanitized work of the global art circuit. In a presentation and conversation around Scott’s work, he and curator Ryan Wong will discuss the imperatives of art-making in revealing the roots of radicalized violence, and the role of protest images in moving history forward.
(1) This performance was produced by More Art and took place on October 7, 2014 underneath the Manhattan Bridge Archway in DUMBO.