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Hito Steyerl: How To Build a Sustainable Art World Ocula Conversation Hito Steyerl: How To Build a Sustainable Art World

'A Picture of War is Not War', we read in Hito Steyerl's iconic film November (2004), an essayistic Super 8 film tackling the definition of terrorism constructed around the figure of the artist's best friend Andrea Wolf, who was killed as a terrorist in 1998 in Eastern Anatolia after she joined the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party). Mixing documentary...

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Aichi to Okayama: Art in Japan Looks to the Future Ocula Report Aichi to Okayama: Art in Japan Looks to the Future 11 Oct 2019 : Stephanie Bailey for Ocula

There has been a flurry of triennial and biennial art activity in Japan this year. The Aichi Triennale opened in Nagoya this August, sparking a national debate about the shutting down of a display of formerly censored works—the result of public backlash against a burnt image of Emperor Hirohito and a statue commemorating the women forced into...

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Hans Hartung and Art Informel: Exhibition Walkthrough Ocula Insight | Video
Sponsored Content | Mazzoleni Gallery
Hans Hartung and Art Informel: Exhibition Walkthrough 15 October 2019

Hans Hartung and Art Informel at Mazzoleni London (1 October 2019-18 January 2020) presents key works by the French-German painter while highlighting his connection with artists active in Paris during the 50s and 60s. In this video, writer and historian Alan Montgomery discusses Hartung's practice and its legacy.Born in Leipzig in 1904, Hans...

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Suzanne Lacy

b. 1945, USA

Suzanne Lacy is widely regarded as a pioneer of socially engaged and public art. Working across installation, video and performance, Lacy confronts issues relating to gender identity, sexual violence, labour, poverty, incarceration, racism, aging and youth culture. Often working in collaboration with members of communities and other artists, Lacy's projects merge art with activism, generating dialogue and providing a conduit for change.

In 2016 Lacy was commissioned by Super Slow Way to create Shapes of Water - Sounds of Hope in Pendle, Lancashire. Engaging deeply with the cultural and spiritual history of the area, Lacy worked in collaboration with residents, community organisations such as Building Bridges Pendle, artist collective In-Situ, activists Paul Hartley and Rauf Bashir, musicologist Ron Pen, and anthropologist Massimiliano Mollona. The project took shape as a series of community meetings and workshops that brought together textile workers from England and Pakistan, former employees at the Brierfield Mill that had closed ten years prior. Shapes of Water - Sounds of Hope used shape-note singing and Sufi chanting as a means to reconnect individuals through the collective production of a performance.

For the 21st Biennale of Sydney at Cockatoo Island Lacy presents The Circle and the Square, 2016, a multipart audio-visual installation that represents the culmination of the two-year Shapes of Water - Sounds of Hope project. The Circle and the Square was made over three days in September 2016, when residents came together in the cavernous empty spaces of the Brierfield Mill. The film captures participatory lessons in shape-note singing, an American musical tradition with origins in Lancashire, that brings people together in a square formation to sing spirituals. The film also features Sufi chanting, where people sit in a circle and chant divine words and phrases to form sound vibrations and rhythms that are thought to have the power to heal and elevate the soul. Also presenting interviews with local residents in the abandoned mill, The Circle and the Square explores the intertwined histories of labour and migration and the social and economic repercussions of the demise of the textile industry.

Biography by Tai Spruyt and Stephanie Berlangieri | Biennale of Sydney Exhibition Team | 2018
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