Jaromil, Ilana Salama Ortar, Stephen Wright, Galia Shapira, Aref Nammari, Haggai Kuppermintz, Phil Shane, Alexandra Handal, Artist Emergency Response, Shahrzad Arshadi, Josée Lambert, Negotiations Working Group
A Space Main Gallery
June 19 – July 19, 2003
Opening June 19, 2003, 5:30 pm–7:30 pm
Copresented by: Creative Response
WILL is a Negotiations event, a Creative Response initiative, made possible in collaboration with Women for Palestine (Toronto), through a grant from Ontario Arts Council and sponsored by numerous community organizations and individual contributors.
This exhibition is part of Negotiations – From a Piece of Land to a Land of Peace, a multidisciplinary cultural event organized by Creative Response and taking place from June 16 – 26. Visual art works presented in the gallery include a web site, text + image, audio-visual and electronic installations, and photography.
What connects the diverse range of visual narratives is how they trace the histories and consequences of the emergence of the State of Israel in 1948 on Jewish, Palestinian and Arabic communities around the world. Creative Response came together to strive for a just and lasting peace in the region and among communities in the diaspora. The idea that artists offer new and creative ways to intervene in social dialogue and reach beyond the limitations of official politics and soundbite media is central to the collective curatorial intent. Artists were asked to engage in dialogue about the issues and to produce collaborative, participatory works. The projects selected for exhibition respond to the demand for acknowledgement of a multiplicity of voices, a desire to co-labour across divides, and a recognition of existing inequities between the Palestinians and Israelis.
WILL reaffirms the active role that artists have played in response to different forms of censorship and with regards to areas of political conflict. At a time when public spaces for open exchange of ideas and opinions are increasingly restricted, the exhibition provides access to creative dialogue through innovative visual art practice.
Ilana Salama Ortar and Stephen Wright, Inadvertent Monuments
Rami a.k.a. Jaromil (http://korova.dyne.org) is a free software programmer and streaming media pioneer, media artist and activist, performer and emigrant. Jaromil is active in the Italy Indymedia Collective, and is currently the software analyst and developer for PUBLIC VOICE Lab (Vienna).
Ilana Salama Ortar is a Haifa-based artist, working extensively on the development of “civic art” (city + civitas), investigating the visible and invisible traces of the erasure of individual and collective memory in the urban fabric.
Stephen Wright is a Paris-based theorist of art-related practice.
Galia Shapira is an Israeli visual artist.
Aref Nammari is a Palestinian electronics engineer and activist.
Haggai Kuppermintz is an Israeli assistant professor of education.
Phil Shane is an American associate professor of accounting.
Alexandra Handal is a Santo-Domingo-NYC based Palestinian artist whose installations, drawings and digital media focus on issues of transnationality, cultural migration/displacement, representation, and memory. Her work has been represented in exhibitions in MYC, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, and Sydney, Australia. Currently, she is a Visiting Artist Lecturer at the Escuela de Diseno in the Dominican Republic, affiliated with Parsons School of Design.
Handal worked in collaboration with poets KAREN
ALKALAY-GUT and NATHALIE HANDAL
Artist Emergency Response (AER) is a Chicago-based collective of artists and activists – including many Jews and Palestinians – working for a peaceful solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Shahrzad Arshadi, a human rights activist and Montreal-based Canadian/Iranian artist, came to Canada as a political refugee on December 24, 1983. In the past 10 years, Shahrzad has ventured into different fields of photography, painting and video, enabling her focus on issues of memory, culture and human rights. Shahrzad has exhibited her work in various locations across North America.
Josée Lambert is a freelance photographer in the cultural domain. 12 years ago, she began documentary work in the Middle East. Often associating herself with humanitarian organizations, Josee’s work primarily focused on the impact of sanctions on the Iraqi people. She also produced, in collaboration with Amnesty International, an important documentary with prisoners of Khiam Detention Centre, south of Lebanon.
The Negotiations Working Group started as a small formation with dynamic membership – by choice, chance or guile – within Creative Response. For records of other CR initiatives, visit http://creativeresponseweb.net