We are angry, we are sad, we are tired, we are united: Letter from lumbung community

We are angry, we are sad, we are tired, we are united: Letter from lumbung community

e-flux Notes

Courtesy of e-flux. 

September 10, 2022
We are angry, we are sad, we are tired, we are united: Letter from lumbung community

Dear Christian Geselle, Angela Dorn, Susanne Völker, Claudia Roth, the Supervisory Board and the Shareholders of documenta, 

We are angry, we are sad, we are tired, we are united.

We have tried our best to stay above the chaos, hostility, racism and censorship that have engulfed this edition of documenta. We have tried our best to stay focused and committed to our work and the promises and hopes of the lumbung. We have been resilient and in solidarity with our communities, friends, supporters, hosts and guests.

Today’s press release published here refers to a broader preliminary assessment. We have seen this preliminary report of the scientific advisory panel.

This report represents a new line crossed, and we categorically refuse it: This line marks a racist drift in a pernicious  structure of censorship. We denounce the vicious attempt at censoring the presentation of the Tokyo Reels. The scientific advisory panel, appointed by the Supervisory Board of Documenta gGmbH in August 2022, has developed their preliminary findings. In addition to myriad and problematic accusations, the report argues that “[…] the serious problems of documenta fifteen consist not only in the presentation of isolated works with anti-Semitic imagery and statements, but also in a curatorial and organisational structural environment that has allowed an anti-Zionist, anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli mood to prevail.” 

Because we stand by our rejection of censorship, we vigorously opposed the creation of this scientific advisory panel. We do not accept the allegations of their preliminary report, which unashamedly reproduce poorly researched claims from the media; likewise, the report lacks scientific proof, academic references, rigorous argumentation and integrity. 

For months we have continuously faced smearing attacks, humiliations, vandalism, and threats in major media outlets, as well as in the streets and in our spaces. What is even scarier is the normalized dismissal of these actions. We have detailed these experiences in our previous statements and this has been completely ignored by the Supervisory Board of Documenta gGmbH.

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