Publish dateWednesday 28 February 2024 - 15:11
Story Code : 286647
8,000 artists sign online petition to exclude Israel from Venice Biennale
The Art Not Genocide Alliance (ANGA), a recently formed advocacy group, has managed to attract a remarkable 8,000 signatures from artists and curators for its petition urging Israel’s exclusion from the 60th Venice Biennale.
Afghan Voice Agency (AVA) - Monitoring: ANGA’s online open letter is titled, “No Genocide Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.”
The Venice Biennale is the oldest of its kind being organized every year since 1895. It is an international cultural exhibition, mostly focusing on contemporary art, hosted annually in Venice, Italy, by the Biennale Foundation.
“Any official representation of Israel on the international cultural stage is an endorsement of its policies and of the genocide in Gaza,” the petition states. “The Biennale is platforming a genocidal apartheid state.”
“The ICJ has issued interim measures warning Israel to cease any acts of genocide in Gaza. Israel’s months- and in fact many-decades-long assault on Gaza continues regardless, while its leaders proclaim they are above International Law and boldly advertise their genocidal intent,” the letter read, referring to the rulings by the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
The letter critiques both the Biennale and the curator of the 59th edition, Cecilia Alemani, for exhibiting double standards by expressing solidarity with Ukraine in the wake of the conflict with Russia in February 2022.
“The Biennale has been silent about Israel’s atrocities against Palestinians. We are appalled by this double standard,” the petition states.
Furthermore, the letter underscores the considerable number of casualties in Gaza, highlighting recent calculations that suggest a daily death toll of up to 250 Palestinians.
It also highlights the fact that the apartheid South Africa was prohibited from taking part in the Biennale from 1968 to 1993, which coincided with the end of apartheid. Meanwhile, Israel has a dedicated pavilion in the Giardini, the park where the festival takes place.
Palestine lacks a dedicated pavilion at the cultural exhibition, but its participation in this year’s chapter is highlighted through a project led by Palestinian activist Issa Amro and South African photographer Adam Broomberg, both signatories of the petition.
“Art does not happen in a vacuum and cannot transcend reality,” the letter reads.
“While Israel’s curatorial team plans their so-called ‘Fertility Pavilion’ reflecting on contemporary motherhood, Israel has murdered more than 12,000 children and destroyed access to reproductive care and medical facilities. As a result, Palestinian women have C-sections without anesthetic and give birth in the street.”
The letter concludes that “any work” officially representing Israel is “an endorsement of its genocidal policies.”/Press TV
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