Farah Nayeri addresses the difficult questions plaguing the art world, from the bad habits of Old Masters, to the current grappling with identity politics.
For centuries, art censorship has been a top-down phenomenon–kings, popes, and one-party states decided what was considered obscene, blasphemous, or politically deviant in art.
Today, censorship can also happen from the bottom-up, thanks to calls to action from organizers and social media campaigns. Artists and artworks are routinely taken to task for their insensitivity. In this new world order, artists, critics, philanthropists, galleries and museums alike are recalibrating their efforts to increase the visibility of marginalized voices and respond to the people’s demands for better ethics in art.
But what should we, the people, do with this newfound power?
With exclusive interviews with Nan Goldin, Sam Durant, Faith Ringgold, and others, Nayeri tackles wide-ranging issues including sex, religion, gender, ethics, animal rights, and race.
By asking and answering questions such as: Who gets to make art and who owns it? How do we correct the inequities of the past? What does authenticity, exploitation, and appropriation mean in art?, Takedown provides the necessary tools to navigate the art world.