Artists continue to be imprisoned and exiled and art continues to be banned and destroyed, all of which gives evidence of the power of images to unsettle, to speak truth to power, to question our cherished cultural norms or our ideas about what is sacred.
Ai Weiwei will give the first keynote address with a video he is creating especially for the conference, The Censorship of Artists: Artists in Prison, Artists in Exile. Our second keynote event will feature Katia Samutsevich from Pussy Riot, who will talk about supporting LGBT rights in Russia and art performance as political protest. The program pairs artists with critics, museum directors, and scholars like Paul Chan and Holland Cotter, Shirin Neshat and Jack Persekian, and Ricardo Dominguez and Stephen Duncombe. Olaf Peters, Emily Braun, and David Freedberg will address the history of banning art and Agnes Gund will moderate. Finally, Jeffrey Deitch, Boris Groys, Jack Persekian, Lisa Phillips, and Svetlana Mintcheva will examine self-censorship in arts institutions.