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Ai Weiwei and JR. Political Artists and Activist Artists and the Plight of Refugees

Journal article
Authors Abby Peterson
Published in Journal of Mediterranean Knowledge
Volume 4
Issue 2
Pages 183-202
ISSN 2499-930X
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Sociology and Work Science
Pages 183-202
Language en
Links doi.org/10.26409/2019JMK4.2.12
Keywords Keywords: activist artist, dilemma of representation, movement artist scholars, political artist, refugee crisis
Subject categories Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)

Abstract

The article will address Ai Weiwei’s and JR’s political engagement with the refugee crisis, the former as a political artist and the latter as an activist artist. Ai, in a series of conceptual installations and the feature film Human Flow, as did JR at Tecate on the Mexican-US border, have sought to shed light on the securitization of migration and the hollowness of neoliberalism’s human rights discourse. More generally, the article will interrogate the roles of the socially concerned political artist and the socially involved activist artist. An underlying question deals with the power of representation inevitably wielded by artists. While the ‘dilemma of representation’ cannot be resolved, the article explores the different approaches to this dilemma employed by Ai and JR to mitigate the dilemma.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012
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