That the first work of art I saw during this year’s Miami Art Week was a newscast seems somehow appropriate in our precarious-yet-emerging-from-Covid present. “How do we make sense of things in today’s age of misinformation and sped-up media ecosystem?” the artists behind it, from the civic-engagement coalition For Freedoms, appeared to be asking. “And really, what’s the difference between art and the news?”
Just beyond the entrance to this year’s Untitled Art fair was the installation “For Freedoms News,” a project billing itself as a “creative experiment in artist-run media.” Playing off the seemingly official appearance of a CNN-, Bloomberg-, or Fox News–style broadcast set, the effort featured a community of artists, dealers, fairgoers, and others—from the poet Aja Monet to the reporter Marisa Mazria Katz to the digital strategist JiaJia Fei—in conversations around art, politics, and society. Coy as it may be, the entire concept made a compelling case around the performative nature of both the art market and broadcast media, as well as who shapes “reality” and who has the control to elevate particular voices.
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