#19BoS Working Group: Statement of Withdrawal from 19th Biennale of Syndey

Statement of Withdrawal from 19th Biennale of Syndey

STATEMENT OF WITHDRAWAL

26 February 2014

We are five of the 41 artists – Libia Castro, Ólafur Ólafsson, Charlie Sofo, Gabrielle de Vietri and Ahmet Öğüt – who signed a letter to the Board of the Biennale of Sydney in relation to their founding sponsor, Transfield.

We make this statement in light of Transfield’s expanding management of Manus Island and Nauru immigration detention centres. We act in the wake of the death of Reza Berati from inside Manus Island detention centre on February 17. We are in urgent political circumstances with a government that is stepping up their warfare on the world’s most vulnerable people daily.

We have received indications from the Board of the Biennale and Transfield that there will be no movement on their involvement in this issue. In our letter to the Board we asked for action and engagement, but we are told that the issue is too complex, and that the financial agreements are too important to re-negotiate.

And so we make this statement from a critical juncture of political urgency and artistic autonomy.

This is a statement of our withdrawal from the 19th Biennale of Sydney.

via #19BoS Working Group: Statement of Withdrawal from 19th Biennale of Syndey.

via #19BoS Working Group: Statement of Withdrawal from 19th Biennale of Syndey.

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