Stephen Kroninger
Fear of Art conference Feb 12-13
Ai Wei Wei

The entire conference is video archived here The Fear of Art: 32nd Social Research Conference on Livestream
The New School
66 West 12th Street
The Center for Public Scholarship presents a public conference on The Fear of Art. Artists are imprisoned and exiled. Art continues to be banned and destroyed. This is evidence of the power of images to unsettle, to speak truth to power, to question our cherished cultural norms and our ideas about what is sacred. Join artists, scholars, and museum directors to discuss the power of art and the importance of advocating for art, artists, and freedom of expression. The conference has been made possible with generous support from Agnes Gund, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Ford Foundation, ArteEast, and Larry Warsh. The conference is co-sponsored by The Vera List Center for Art and Politics, PEN American Center, and the India China Institute at The New School.
Conference Program

Thursday, February 12, 2015 

10:00–11:30 a.m.
Session 1: Attack on Charlie Hebdo: "Fear of Art" Enacted

Ben Katchor, Associate Professor at Parsons, The New School for Design; contributes picture-stories to Metropolis magazine; author, Hand-Drying in America and other stories (2013)
Nikahang Kowsar, Iranian cartoonist, journalist, and blogger
Saadia Toor, Associate Professor, Sociology and Anthropology, College of Staten Island; author, The State of Islam: Culture and Cold War Politics in Pakistan (2011)
Alexandra Zsigmond, Deputy Art Director for the Opinion Section, the New York Times
Moderator: Victor S. Navasky, editor, publisher, and publisher emeritus of The Nation; George Delacorte Professor of Magazine Journalism; Director of Delacorte Center of Magazines; Chair of the Columbia Journalism Review, Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism; author, The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Evolutionary Power (2013)
12:00–2:00 p.m.
Session 2: Reflections on Art Censorship and Banning

A. “Degenerate Art” in Nazi Germany
Olaf Peters, Professor of Modern Art History and Art Theory, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg; curator, “Degenerate Art: The Attack on Modern Art in Nazi Germany, 1937” exhibition at the Neue Galerie, March 13–June 30, 2014
B. Artist as Collaborator with Totalitarian Regimes
Emily Braun, Distinguished Professor, Director of the Art History Program, Deputy Chair of the Department of Art and Art History, Hunter College and the Graduate Center
C. Banning, Censorship, Defamation, and Destruction
David Freedberg, Pierre Matisse Professor of the History of Art and Director of the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Columbia University
Moderator: Agnes Gund, philanthropist, art and arts education patron and collector; President Emerita, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA); Chairman, MoMA PS1; founder, Studio in a School
2:15-3:45 p.m. 
Session 3: Activist Art

Ricardo Dominguez, artist, co-founder, the Electronic Disturbance Theater (EDT); Associate Professor of Visual Arts, University of California San Diego
Stephen Duncombe, Associate Professor, Gallatin School of Individualized Study, New York University; co-founder, School for Creative Activism; Co-director, Center for Artistic Activism
Moderator: Suzanne Nossel, Executive Director, PEN American Center
4:00-5:30 p.m.
Session 4: The Potency of Art

Holland Cotter, Pulitzer Prize-winning art critic, the New York Times
Paul Chan, artist
Moderator: Carin Kuoni, Director, Vera List Center for Art and Politics, The New School for Public Engagement
6:00-7:30 p.m. 
Session 5: 
The Censorship of Artists: Artists in Prison, Artists in Exile
Ai Weiwei, Chinese contemporary artist and political activist
(via a video made for the conference funded by Agnes Gund and Larry Warsh)
Followed by a panel discussion:
Melissa Chiu, Director, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden 
Ethan Cohen, founder, Ethan Cohen Fine Arts, specializing in Chinese contemporary art
Minky Worden, Director of Global Initiatives, Human Rights Watch
Moderator: Jerome A. Cohen, Professor of Law, New York University School of Law

Friday, February 13, 2015

10:00–11:30 a.m. 
Tour of Site-Specific Works from the New School Art Collection
Begins in the Orozco Room at 66 West 12th Street, 7th floor
Works include Jose Clemente Orozco's historic 1931 New School mural cycle, “A Call to Revolution and Table of Universal Brotherhood” as well as other installations throughout the university's public spaces by Camilo Egas, Alfredo Jaar, Sol Le Witt, Dave Muller, Martin Puryear, Michael van Valkenburgh, Brian Tolle, and Kara Walker.
Guide: Silvia Rocciolo, Curator, The New School Art Collection
11:30-1:00 p.m. 
Session 6: Artists at Risk/Artists in Exile
Chaw Ei Thein, Burmese multimedia artist
Naila Al Atrash, Syrian director, human rights activist
Moderator: Elzbieta Matynia, Associate Professor of Sociology and Liberal Studies, Director of the Transregional Center for Democratic Studies, The New School for Social Research
2:00-3:30 p.m.
Session 7: Censorship and Self-Exile

Shirin Neshat, Iranian visual artist and filmmaker 
Jack Persekian, Director and Head Curator, The Palestine Museum; former Director, Sharjah Art Foundation
Moderator: László Jakab Orsós, World Voices Festival and Public Programs Director, PEN America
4:00-6:00 p.m. 
Session 8: Who Does the Policing? What Is the Role of Self-Censorship?
Jeffrey Deitch, American art dealer and curator who served as director of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA) between 2010 and 2013
Boris Groys, Global Distinguished Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies, Department of Russian and Slavic Studies, New York University 
Jack Persekian, Director and Head Curator, The Palestine Museum; former Director, Sharjah Art Foundation
Lisa Phillips, Director, The New Museum
Moderator: Svetlana Mintcheva, Director of Programs, National Coalition Against Censorship; co-editor, Censoring Culture: Contemporary Threats to Free Expression (The New Press, 2006

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