Art And Culture
0

NY’s MoMA Protests Trump Travel Ban, Rehangs Iranian Works

The museum has rehung part of its permanent collection with works by artists from some of the seven countries whose citizens are blocked from entering the United States
‘Mon Pere et Moi’ (My Father and I), right, by Charles Hossein Zenderoudi, on display at the Museum  of Modern Art in New York‘Mon Pere et Moi’ (My Father and I), right, by Charles Hossein Zenderoudi, on display at the Museum  of Modern Art in New York

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York has protested President Donald Trump’s travel ban on seven Muslim-majority nations, including Iran, by rehanging works of artists from those nations.

In one of the strongest protests yet by a major cultural institution against Trump’s executive order on immigration, the museum has rehung part of its permanent collection with works by artists from some of the seven countries whose citizens are blocked from entering the United States, the New York Times reported on February 3. 

Seven works by artists such as the Los Angeles-based Iranian video artist Tala Madani, 36, Sudanese painter Ibrahim el-Salahi, 86, the Iraqi-born architect Zaha Hadid (1950-2016) were installed Thursday night in MoMA’s fifth-floor galleries, replacing seven works by Picasso, Matisse and Picabia, among other western artists. 

Alongside each work is a wall text that plainly states the museum’s intentions: “This work is by an artist from a nation whose citizens are being denied entry into the United States, according to a presidential executive order issued on Jan. 27, 2017. This is one of several such artworks from the museum’s collection installed throughout the fifth-floor galleries to affirm the ideals of welcome and freedom as vital to this museum as they are to the United States.”

Except for Hadid and el-Salahi, the other artists are all Iranian by birth or heritage. Besides Madani, they are sculptor Parviz Tanavoli, 79,  artist Charles Hossein Zenderoudi, 80 ; photographer Shirana Shahbazi, 43, and painter Marcos Grigorian (1925-2007). 

In addition, a large sculpture of aluminum and steel by Siah Armajani, 78, an Iranian-American artist, was placed in the glass-walled lobby courtyard overlooking the garden.

“The fifth-floor additions rupture the museum’s traditional narrative of western modernism before 1945. Only very rarely has MoMA interrupted its succession of art from Post-Impressionism to Cubism, Dadaism, and after with works of postwar and contemporary art. Further additions are planned for the weeks ahead,” the newspaper said.

The Museum of Modern Art has also scheduled four screenings later this month of films by directors subject to the travel ban. They include ‘Al-Yazerli’ (1974), an experimental feature by the Iraqi-born German director Kais al-Zubaidi, 72, and ‘Stars in Broad Daylight’ (1988), by Oussama Mohammad, 62, a Syrian filmmaker exiled in Paris.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints

Financialtribune.com