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Politics in Art

April 27, 2022 – February 26, 2023
MOCAK, Краков
  • group project
  • overseas event

Selected artworks

  • Maria Anna Potocka curator
  • Agnieszka Sachar curator
  • Martyna Sobczyk curator
  • Mirosława Bałazy coordinator
  • Michał Adamski participant
  • Paweł Althamer participant
  • Andrey Anro participant
  • Alpin Arda Bağcık participant
  • Mirosław Bałka participant
  • Krzysztof M. Bednarski participant
  • Marcin Berdyszak participant
  • Jerzy Bereś participant
  • Andrij Bojarov participant
  • Maciej Cholewa participant
  • Hubert Czerepok participant
  • Edward Dwurnik participant
  • Elmgreen & Dragset participant
  • Daniil Galkin participant
  • Thomas Galler participant
  • Jakob Ganslmeier participant
  • Lukáš Houdek participant
  • Khaled Jarrar participant
  • Hannes Jung participant
  • Šejla Kamerić participant
  • Allan Kaprow participant
  • Dick Higgins participant
  • kennardphillipps participant
  • Thomas Kilpper participant
  • Paweł Kowalewski participant
  • Jarosław Kozłowski participant
  • Marcin Kruk participant
  • Agata Kubis participant
  • Michalina Kuczyńska participant
  • Tomasz Kulka participant
  • Edgar Leciejewski participant
  • Alicja Lesiak participant
  • Zbigniew Libera participant
  • Ella Littwitz participant
  • Artem Loskutov participant
  • Agnieszka Mastalerz participant
  • Rafał Milach participant
  • Richard Mosse participant
  • Tanja Muravskaja participant
  • Joanna Musiał participant
  • Deimantas Narkevičius participant
  • Csaba Nemes participant
  • Laura Pannack participant
  • Pyotr Pavlensky participant
  • Beata Pofelska participant
  • Wojtek Radwański participant
  • Tomáš Rafa participant
  • Artūras Raila participant
  • Oliver Ressler participant
  • Adam Rzepecki participant
  • Bartek Sadowski participant
  • Tomasz Sarnecki participant
  • Maxim Sarychau participant
  • Santiago Sierra participant
  • Slavs and Tatars participant
  • Olia Sosnovskaya participant
  • a.z.h. participant
  • Paweł Starzec participant
  • Stitchit and Collective participant
  • SUPERFLEX participant
  • Paweł Susid participant
  • Jason deCaires Taylor participant
  • Piotr Uklański participant
  • Daniel Warmuziński participant
  • Sislej Xhafa participant
  • Ada Zielińska participant
  • Dawid Zieliński participant
  • Artur Żmijewski participant

In the past, art served the purpose of bolstering political power –today it is a tool for questioning and holding authority to account. Once, artists used their talent to support the political system of the day. Today, they have become perspicacious and critical observers of the political scene and are active participants in opposition.

The relationship between politics and art goes back a long way. For centuries, religion was part of the arrangement; for rulers and politicians it was the means of gaining control over hearts and minds. In some countries religion continues to back politics, with a doubly demoralising effect.

The exhibition Politics in Art presents – in six sections – the sceptical and critical approach of contemporary artists to the actions of those in power, exposing the artifice and mendacity of political strategies. It demonstrates that in the name of ambition, the desire to remain in power and the feeding of the dictatorial ego, politicians are capable of lying, manipulation and murder. Artists oppose this, both as critics and as soldiers.

  • Opposition and Protest – artistic manifestation of social and political views, and opposition to unethical behaviour of those in power. In extreme situations – such as the war in Ukraine – artists join in the fight.

  • Subverting Systems and Borders – questioning existing divisions and proposing – often utopian – ideas for political change and revolution.

  • Democracy and Its Corruption – identifying the ideal political model, realised through civil liberty and the right to vote, while pointing out its distortions.

  • Nationalism – warning against the reprehensible conviction that the assumed superiority of one’s own nation justifies contempt for and aggression towards others.

  • European Union – concern for the stability of the European Community in the era of migration, Brexit and the imperialist military aggression of Russia.

  • Political Mediality – exposing the role of the mass media in shaping political views, and their potential for the manipulation of information. Protest against muzzling of the media.

Politics in Art is the 10th exhibition in the flagship MOCAK series, in which we combine art with the most important civilisational concepts. Each exhibition presents a variety of artistic interpretations of a given theme. Politics in Art has been confronted with a tragic time when political ambitions have turned into a crime.

  • political