The Art of Politics…

23 09 2007

For those of you with concerns beyond commission percentages and unit production, the Cross Arts Project mob have sent the following notice…

The Cross Art Projects invites you to

Cross Conversation: Saturday 6 October, 3-5PM

Political & Institutional Censorship, the Artist & Writer:
Innovation, critique, sedition and the political cycle: looking back, looking forward
Panel:
Elizabeth Gertsakis artist, writer and curator
David Bernie, vice-president, Council for Civil Liberties NSW
Nick Tsoutas, senior curator, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre


With the Exhibition:
The Wording of Police Charges
M
ehmet Adil, Elizabeth Gertsakis & Michael Jones (Sedition)
Exhibition Dates:
14 September to 13 October 2007

Where:
The Cross Art Projects, 33 Roslyn Street, Kings Cross
I
nformation:
Jo Holder 0406 537933———

Exhibition: THE WORDING OF POLICE CHARGES
Many find the suppression of freedom of expression under the government’s Terror Laws unacceptable. But the suppression is spreading. The government is utilizing its legislative armory in more and more mainstream ways.Artists Mehmet Adil, Elizabeth Gertsakis and Michael Jones consider how restrictions to freedom of expression have quickly spread from remote legislative meeting rooms into civic and private realms.

The circle of suspects now includes journalists, scholars, students, lawyers, unionists and Aboriginal communities who disagree with authoritarian intervention legislation. Post-APEC, suspects include jay-walking accountants and accredited press photographers.

The exhibition title The Wording of Police Charges is one of fifty book covers adopted by the American artist RB Kitaj for his print series In Our Time (1979). Police Charges was a bestseller of its day.The installation by Elizabeth Gertsakis is based on a censored newspaper Police News (or The Citizen), produced over three years from 1875. Her new prints take up the crude graphic style of Police News and poetically reinterpret the newspapers burlesque and pathos. Each is accompanied by a newspaper-style interpretative poem.The popularity of Police News threatened the sales of Melbounes Age and Argus newspapers. Richard Egan-Lee, a radical writer and agitator, devised the paper and drew on the political tradition of William Cobbetts Political Register

, to advocate radical, social and parliamentary reform. Egan-Lees weekly diet of illustrated voyeurism focused on local criminality and corruption as a form of social and political criticism.Egan-Lees success in producing an illustrated weekly for the masses led to the Age and Argus pressing charges on grounds of obscenity. This resulted in changes to censorship legislation, creating a legacy of strict control lasting into the 1970s.In contrast to public advocacy, Mehmet Adils installation, Envy of the Visible-Invisible, captures fragile moments in an intimate process of thinking and writing. His images and objects act as connectors between a transitory thought and the recording of it. Here, thinking and writing are in transition toward a more crystallized form of a concept.

In a more pragmatic sense, the artist responds to a rhetorical question regarding art and its place in a broader social and cultural context. Any given answer is contingent on the cultural, social and political variables of its own time and space.

Michael Jones has cut words from the banner headlines of our daily newspapers, a daily diet of illustrated voyeurism and terrorist criminality, for his series of Apostasy collages. Like Egan-Lee before him, these images have a furious political intent.We have seen the sort of society politicians will tolerate to gain their own ends: a society that on a daily basis, accepts people being held without charge, and in court, evidence heard in camera, the use of pseudonyms and the suppression of evidence from publication (and its selective release by the government). Increasingly, it is the Attorney General who tells us what we can read and know.

Wh
ere: The Cross Art Projects
33
Roslyn Street, Kings Cross, Sydney (opposite St Lukes Hospital gates)
Hours
: Wed to Sat, 11 to 6PM———


The
Cross Art Projects
A space for independent art & curatorial studies

Director: Jo Holder
33 Roslyn Street Kings Cross Sydney 2011
Wednesday to Saturday, 11 to 6
T: + 61 (02) 9357-2058;
0406 537933

E
: info@crossart.com.au

W: http://www.crossart.com.au

———-
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