Abirpothi

India’s only daily art newspaper

Amalgamation of art and politics in Miami Art Week

A SUMMARY OF THE MOST EXCITING ART NEWS FROM AROUND THE GLOBE

While we focus on Indian art, we can’t obviously function in a vacuum. It’s a small world and everything is connected, especially on the web. So, let’s train our spotlight across the world map to see what’s going on — from art trends to socio-political issues to everything that affects the great aesthetic global consciousness. Or, let’s just travel the world and have some fun!

Tribute to political prisoners in Miami by Tania Bruguera

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The Cuban artist and activist Tania Bruguera read out the names of 958 political prisoners, including numerous artists, detained in Cuba during a performance piece staged at El Espacio 23, the private museum in Allapattah founded by the collector Jorge Pérez. The Coro piece, lasting an hour, vocalised the “names of the political prisoners accompanied by a fragmented interpretation of the Cuban national anthem”, says a project statement. The list of prisoners was provided by the human rights group, Justicia 11J. “It is important to do this action during Art Basel Miami Beach. I want to remind people what is happening in Cuba right now. There is also a tradition in activism of reading the names of people who have died [or been persecuted],” Bruguera says. Asked how US politicians should respond to the crisis in Cuba, she says: “They should not support nor do business with the Cuban government while Cuban people are suffering.” Read more on Art Newspaper.

US politics in Miami Art Week

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Earlier this year a leading US collector wrote to Art Basel’s outgoing global director Marc Spiegler saying he refused to set foot in Florida for the Miami fair this week after the so-called “don’t say gay” bill was passed by the state in March. The legislation restricts primary schools from teaching pupils about sexual orientation and gender issues. The man behind the bill is Florida’s governor and Fox News favourite Ron DeSantis, who earlier this month coasted to a second term and is expected to run for president against Donald Trump in 2024. DeSantis is waging a culture war on other fronts, too: he has banned abortion after 15 weeks in the state and recently introduced the Stop Woke Act, which limits teaching on critical race theory, including the concept of white privilege. A small reprieve came in August, when a judge issued a temporary injunction on the latter bill, describing it as “positively dystopian”. Details on Art Newspaper.

Major museum building program in Qatar

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While Qatar raced to complete its new football stadia, metro stations and hotels in time to host the 1.5 million tourists arriving for the Fifa World Cup 2022, its ambitious cultural developments were believed to have taken a back seat. But, in the run-up to the tournament, the country’s authority for cultural institutions and heritage sites has announced a wave of future construction projects—and revealed the first details of the museums that will house the country’s extensive art collections. In 2006, Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani emerged as one of the art world’s power collectors after her father, the then ruling emir, appointed her to run Qatar Museums (QM). A report by The New York Times in 2013 estimated her annual acquisitions budget was $1bn. A string of record-breaking purchases on the global art market, including works by Paul Cézanne, Mark Rothko and Damien Hirst, fuelled speculation that Doha was preparing a museum of international Modern and contemporary art to add to the Museum of Islamic Art, which reopened in October after an 18-month overhaul, and Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art. Read more on Art Newspaper.

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