September 14, 2004 - Whitney Museum of American Art - WAR! PROTEST IN AMERICA 1965-2004 / MEMORIALS OF WAR
September 14, 2004

WAR! PROTEST IN AMERICA 1965-2004 / MEMORIALS OF WAR

WAR! PROTEST IN AMERICA 1965-2004 / MEMORIALS OF WAR
26 August - 24 October 2004

Whitney Museum of American Art
945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street
1 800 WHITNEY

www.whitney.org

Third World Newsreel “Only the Beginning”, 1971. 16mm film, color, sound; 20 min. Courtesy of Third World Newsreel.  

WAR! PROTEST IN AMERICA 1965-2004 and MEMORIALS OF WAR
WAR! Protest in America, 1965-2004, on view at the Whitney from August 26 to October 24, 2004, presents films that address the theme of war, centered around an event at the heart of the outrage that galvanized Americans during the late 1960s: the war in Vietnam. In that period, a new generation, disillusioned with authority and motivated by the political and social turbulence of the times, explored issues of civil rights, black power, personal liberation, and political action. While playing a key role in the proceedings, filmmakers documented this remarkable moment in history.

Some of the filmmakers included in this series aligned themselves with collective political filmmaking centered around the New York and San Francisco Newsreels (later known as Third World Newsreel). In many cases, the anonymously produced films challenged the hierarchy of television news and “professional” documentary filmmaking, capturing testimony and interviews with controversial and sometimes shocking content. Filmmakers such as Emile de Antonio, Beryl Fox, Jean-Luc Godard, and D.A. Pennebaker used raw, controversial footage to create iconic independent documentaries whose antiwar statements of protest and civic unrest came to define the period. A section of this series is devoted to experimental films protesting the Vietnam War, including works by Paul Sharits, Stan Brakhage, and Carolee Schneemann.

The series also includes two films that address protest against the war in Iraq. In Not in Our Name, Brigitte Cornand interviews artists, including Richard Serra, Lawrence Weiner, Martha Rosler, and Leon Golub, on the eve of the Iraq war. In Julie Talen’s Sixty Cameras Against the War, raw footage independently shot by sixty protesters during the New York march against the Iraq war on February 15, 2003 is woven by Talen into a kaleidoscopic portrait of a demonstration split apart by barricades.

The film series, curated by Whitney curator Chrissie Iles and artist Sam Durant, is presented by the Whitney Museum of American Art and The Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, Los Angeles. For Whitney tickets, call 1-877-WHITNEY. Screenings at The Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, Los Angeles, will take place October 30-31, 2004. For tickets there, call (213) 237-2810.

Concurrently, Memorials of War, an exhibition of prints, sculpture and photographs from the Whitney Museum’s permanent collection, brings together works made by artists from the 1960s to the present on the issues of war and memory. Chris Burden’s America’s Darker Moments (1994) and Robert Morris’s lithograph series War Memorials (1970) are shown alongside Jon Haddock’s Children Fleeing Napalm Strike, Modified (1972), Sigmund Abeles’ Vietnam Series: Helicopters (1967), and Edward Kienholz’s assemblage The Non War Memorial, comprising a sand-filled American soldier’s uniform from the Vietnam era. Vik Muniz’s blurred image in Memory Rendering of Kent State Shootings (1988-90) evokes the elusive state of memory itself. David Kiehl, the Whitney’s curator of Prints and Special Collections, curated the exhibition, on view from August 19 through November 28, 2004.

In another related exhibition, this one entirely virtual, opening on September 1, 2004, ARTPORT, the Whitney Museum’s portal to net art and digital arts, links to Ken Goldberg’s Demonstrate. Curated by Christiane Paul, Adjunct Curator of New Media Arts. Whitney Museum. To view the piece, visit artport.whitney.org

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