Symposium: Institutions and Resistance – Alliances for Art at Risk


On 12 February 2022, the »Institutions and Resistance – Alliances for Art at Risk« symposium brought together activists, artists of all genres, and representatives of institutions to resist the »Threats and Risks« faced by art, free creativity and thought and imagine alliances to strengthen the field in the turbulent global predicament.

Where would you go if the world fell apart? What if your colleges and museums were hijacked? Militias and mafias ruled? Your friends and colleagues were hunted or killed?

This is not a test. It is a reality, right now, in several regions of the world. Its horrific face was vanquished in western Europe only 77 years ago. Will we see it again?

Institutions and Resistance – Alliances for Art at Risk is a two-day symposium on resistance and change, and how cultural institutions can be active agents in countering inegalitarian, anti-democratic, authoritarian and eco-destructive forces. New alliances, programmes and concrete policies are being sought to be imagined, conceived or developed, from a local to a transnational level, together with activists and movements. How can these alliances be activated in times of crises to resist or create pressure on governments, corporations and other power-brokers?

New alliances and forms of resistance are urgently needed in the times of existential risks. We are entangling manifold threats: societal, economic, ecological and other potentially catastrophic emergencies. Both at home and abroad, these are compounded by problems related to forced migrations and violent persecution in several geopolitical regions – from Afghanistan to Belarus, from Kazakhstan to China, from the Amazon to the African and Far-East Asian tropics.

Timea Junghaus, ERIAC Executive Director, participated in the Section 2 of the Symposium “Institutions as Resistance”, moderated by Vivienne Chow.

The participants to this Section were: Reza ‘Asung’ Afisina (Ruangrupa), Farid Rakun (Ruangrupa), Marita Muukkonen (AR) and Ivor Stodolsky (AR), Jessica de Abreu, Ehsan Fardjadniya, Mariam Ghani, Katherine Schofield, Waldemar Tatarczuk, Barış Seyitvan, Yama Rahimi, Elisabet Goula Sardà (curator CCCB), Hrag Vartanian (editor-in-chief and co-founder of Hyperallergic, art critic, curator, artist, and lecturer), and Gitte Zschoch (General Secretary ifa – Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen), moderated by Vivienne Chow (Arts and culture journalist). 


Source: ZKM – Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe