Artists: Yazan Khalili, Jonas Staal
Venue: Ludlow 38, New York
Exhibition Title: The Agency for Legal Imagination
Date: October 25 – November 25, 2018
Jonas Staal, New World Summit, Utrecht, 2016, video, 1 hour 5 minutes 51 seconds
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images and video courtesy of Ludlow 38, New York. Photos by Hinda Weiss.
For their first collaborative exhibition, Yazan Khalili and Jonas Staal coined the term ‘state-traps.’ This term addresses more than a decade of artistic, legal and political tactical and strategic engagements through which both artists confront the ideological and repressive apparatuses of the nation-state. Positioning censorship as intrinsic to the freedom of speech, Staal and Khalili expose in their work the limits and falsity of a human right often perceived as the pillar of democracy.
Khalili and Staal suggest that when the law of the state opposes social justice, state-traps are creative, non-lethal assaults triggering the state to over-act. Through minimal means, artistic capabilities are provoking the nation-state to overreact as it is caught off-guard. State-traps make visible the unjust over-powering of the nation-state, thus subversively activate and challenge its legal systems.