Selected pages from "The Protest and The Recuperation"

from repression and censorship, release frompolitical violence, and empowerment through rituals resonant with deep, culturally specific significance.

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The works in The Protest and The Recuperation highlight the aesthetic aspects of protest, weave cultural specificities into their tactics, and represent expressions of willfulness and determination. While not created expressly as acts of protest, they are an homage to the corporeal forms of collective advocacy emerging from the populace and to the importance of the call for action that each references. Neither tied to the direct action nor to a journalistic function per se but rather part of the social movements that protests represent, these works amplify actions and infuse them with poetics and the deepening potential of the slow viewing of art. The works do not come together to tell a story or to create a trajectory of actions that envelop hope within rage. Rather, they become a global conversation through visual means. Through these works, the humanity of protests as spaces of creativity, transformation, and self-realization is foregrounded. Through these works, hopes for making a better future in the face of harsh and vicious realities—repressive at best and brutal at worst—aremade visible and actionable. The works share evidence that the artist who is immersed in the protest scene—an insider, a participant observer, a chronicler—is also someone who propels rights and values forward through the syncretic, thoughtful, and conscientious process of art- making. Self-consciously inside history, these artists honor it and its legacies as building blocks for the future.

29 Betti -Sue Hertz

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