Refusing the frame, or changing the game?

​​On the politics of representation and refusal in curatorial and artistic practices.

  •  Round table discussion 
  •  TOKO & Sint Lucas Antwerp
  •  04.10.2021 from 17:00 to 19:00


The event was possible with  generous contribution of:

  • Afsaneh Salari 
  • Audrey Leboutte 
  • Sofia Dati
  • Hari P.A. Sacré


Moderation of:

  • Joachim H. Ben Yakoub
  • Hoda Siahtiri


Despite themselves, artists or curators who are engaging an aesthetic praxis that from close or afar touches upon a politics of difference are too often caught in various frames by variegated white institutions, who with the best intentions, engage with ongoing societal transformations. The growing demand for fundamental change has been taken up enthusiastically by these institutions spreading confusion by taking up words, rhetoric and discourses, but too often disembodied, disconnected from the very aesthetic experiences these artists want to facilitate. Art Schools organize workshops, seminars and conferences, art institutions produce festivals and shows on radical practices or decolonization, theaters claim it as an artistic mission in conjunction with intersectionality, and art centers take on, as their own, all sorts of radical concepts as soon as they enter the cultural lexicon. Rallying cries for radical change seem to have been hijacked in a game serving new strategic institutional frames —but frames that risks reproducing the same obsolete practices, structures and economies and thus reinforcing existing power relations. Nevertheless, more and more artists are creating different methods and strategies of refusal to navigate these at times exotifying frames in various subversive ways to change the game. During the roundtable Joachim Ben Yakoub and Hoda Siahtiri are going to hold space for Afsaneh Salari, Sofia Dati, Audrey Leboutte and Hari P.A. Sacré to share and go deeper in different ways:

To refuse odd labelings and categorisations by being framed – with stolen virtues of decolonisation- into diversity policies.
To refuse the dynamics of commodification and being objectified as the new normal of agenda and hyped currents of art.
To refuse whatever the white gaze may perceive, value and prioritize.

To refuse being miss perceived and abused in favor of capitalist agendas for art circuits. 

To refuse being eaten as “that kind of thing right now”. 

To change the game.