"Sound of Silence: Art During Dictatorship" Exhibition

EFA Project Space

poster for "Sound of Silence: Art During Dictatorship" Exhibition

This event has ended.

Curated by Belarus-born Olga Kopenkina, this exhibition brings together nine of the most active young artists from Belarus, and their videos, posters, paintings and installations created in solidarity with popular protests against the December 2010 rigged election and state-sanctioned crime that unfolded in its aftermath. Belarus President Lukashenka usurped governmental control seventeen years ago, and proceeded to turn Belarus, a once culturally vibrant country re-establishing its identity after the fall of the Soviet Union, into a repressed and stagnant dictatorship. In December 2010, accusations against falsified presidential elections brought rise to a wave of peaceful protests throughout the country, which were reacted strongly against by the police and the government through violence, mass arrests, unlawful trials for the oppositional leaders and activists, and long jail terms.

Young artists in Belarus responded strongly to the fast growing protest movement with new and bold expression-actions that have been gaining visibility throughout Europe despite the governments efforts to silence them. This is the generation of artists who grew up under the dictatorship of Lukashenka and now many of them have found brazen voices that enable them to take giant risks, challenging the status quo while faced with the constant threat of arrest and the fate of political exile. "Sound of Silence" is the first exhibition in New York City that surveys the recent and powerful activities coming from this generation of Belarusian artists. It presents a range of installation, documentation and objects: from the work generated by the collective www.antibrainwash.net, an artists-run activist website, which features radical protest posters and materials that can be downloaded, printed and distributed; to Marina Naprushkina's constantly morphing installation "The Office of Anti-Propaganda," that presents images, objects, slogans and video footage exploring the illusory reality the Belarus government created through public campaign; to documentation of Ales Pushkin's outlandish staged performance protests delivered to the President, police, and other officials that led him to immediate and constant arrest; to the Minsk-based group FAU's "Monopoly: The Belarusian Edition" that addresses the dominance of economics over politics and culture, when the players assume the roles of government officials and winning depends upon being the most corrupt; to Yauheni Shadko's expressionistic narrative paintings of recent political events.

[Image: antibrainwash.net "Tortures #3 and #6" (2011) (from series of 9 downloadable posters]



from January 27, 2012 to March 10, 2012

Opening Reception on 2012-01-27 from 18:00 to 20:00

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