Hands Off Our Revolution, the art collective protesting rightwing populism

  • Words: Spindle

Over 200 artists have joined a global art collective that promises to create work and hold exhibitions and events that will challenge the current rise of rightwing populism. Hands Off Our Revolution has been formally launched today, and aims to use art to tackle xenophobia, racism, sexism, homophobia, and general discrimination and intolerance. The artists to join include Steve McQueen, David Byrne, Laurie Anderson, Anish Kapoor, Ed Ruscha, Mark Wallinger, Cornelia Parker, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Tactia Dean. “As artists, it is our job and our duty to reimagine and reinvent social relations threatened by right-wing populist rule. It is our responsibility to stand together in solidarity,” reads the collective’s mission statement on their website, “We will not go quietly. It is our role and our opportunity, using our own particular forms, private and public spaces, to engage people in thinking together and debating ideas, with clarity, openness and resilience.”

One of the founders of the project, Adam Broomberg, said creating the collective was a reaction to political events such as Brexit, Trump’s presidency, and the ongoing refugee crisis. Broomberg also revealed that participating artists were in talks with many art institutions, and the first details of their exhibitions and projects will be announced in March. The exhibitions will take place all over the world, not just in Europe and the US, will be held in both major art galleries and in alternative spaces, and all proceeds will go to arts and activist causes. According to the project’s website, the work on display “will bring into public view statements, questions and reflections on the state we are in” and will aim to “do what art has always endeavoured: to help envision and shape the world in which we want to live.”

Find out more and keep up to date with the project at handsoffourrevolution.com