Santiago Sierra: Films and Works
Films and Works is the first presentation of the complete collection of Santiago Sierra‘s films and video documentation. The exhibition comprises 55 videos as well as the continuation of the NO, Global Tour project.
In his work, Sierra confronts the underlying structures of social and economic hegemony with sophisticated political irony and biting social critique. The driving force behind such projects as No, Global Tour is a rejection of complacency and conformism to established power structures. It is an expression of dissatisfaction with the failures of democracy in the light of democracy’s own principles. If the emphasis in Sierra’s work is on disagreement and differences of positions, it is to underscore those principles. This is why Sierra’s art has a particular significance for Icelandic audience at this time. With the collapse of Iceland’s major banks in 2008, this small population suffered a major economic and political crisis, which has called for a extensive rethinking of the country’s social, financial and political institutions. By presenting a comprehensive documentation of Sierra’s approach in diverse sites and socio-political situations, the intent is to focus attention on the importance of uncompromising critical evaluation and continued opposition to the social, financial and political structures that caused the crisis.
Born in Madrid in 1966, Santiago Sierra studied in Madrid, Hamburg and Mexico City. He lived for 14 years in Mexico, which deeply influenced his views on art and politics. Sierra has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions in such prestigious international institutions as Tate Modern, London; KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Irish Museum of Modern Art - IMMA, Dublin; CAC, Malaga; ICA, Boston; and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York. He represented Spain at the 50th Venice Biennial International Art Exhibition in 2003. In 2010 Sierra was awarded the Spanish National Prize for Visual Arts, which he rejected on the grounds that the prize “exploits the prestige of its winner for the benefit of the state.” Currently, Sierra lives and works in Madrid.
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