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Art in the service of the fight against torture

The association Artistes Contre la Torture (ACT) launches its 2022 campaign in collaboration with Alfredo Jaar, internationally renowned artist and architect who will present an exclusive creation at artgenève from March 2 to 6, 2022 

A true bridge between art and human rights, ACT invites hired artists to create works related to torture with the aim of alerting the general public and the authorities to its persistent existence. The association aims to support the prevention actions of the Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT) and the protection of prisoners of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

The ACT curatorial committee, made up of Jacqueline Burckhardt, Tatyana Franck, Thomas Hug and Simon Lamunière, gives carte blanche to the artist Alfredo Jaar for his 2022 campaign. Through his works, Alfredo Jaar is interested in the consequences of armed conflicts on societies and encourages viewers to question the alleged objectivity of images. His work has been exhibited all over the world and he has notably participated in the Biennales of Venice (1986, 2007, 2009, 2013), São Paulo (1987, 1989, 2010, 2021) as well as Documenta in Kassel (1987 , 2002).

Alfredo Jaar explains “Amnesty International has reported cases of torture or ill-treatment in at least 141 countries over the past 5 years. This is unacceptable. I have been tasked by ACT with a new long term project to focus on this crime. In preparation for this project, I created a simple artwork to raise funds and awareness. It is a cubic candle with the following words inscribed on its four sides: TORTURE. MUST. END. NOW

photo credit Bene Buckland, APT

A candle is a symbol of prayer in all religions. It signifies light in times of darkness and life overcoming death. These candles remind us of the dark times we live in. They are an invitation to get involved and make our voices heard. Torture must stop now.”

Alfredo Jaar’s participation in artgenève marks the beginning of his collaboration with ACT. Over the course of the year, he will create a work resulting from encounters with people affected by torture. The process will be accessible to the public who will be able to virtually follow the different stages of the project

Photo credit: Pixabay and by courtesy of ACT


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