Whitney Biennial 2017

Solo en Inglès

Various artworks inside wooden compartments

Occupy Museums (founded 2011), Debtfair, 2017.  Thirty artworks and interactive website, dimensions variable. Courtesy of the artists. Photograph by Bill Orcutt

Noah Fischer: The first show at the Whitney Museum’s new building was called America is Hard to See. With Debtfair, we are positing that the enormity of the debt crisis in America is difficult to see all at once. It is hard to imagine how we as individuals relate to large, global forces that shape world economic growth and collapse.

With Debtfair, we are proposing a new way to see and understand American art and the many arts communities. However, the end point of this project is not what you see on the wall. We are committed to organizing artists around debt education and resistance. Many groups across the nation are working on this issue; in the last few years there have been cases of some odious debts being forgiven such as those to Corinthian college, a predatory for-profit college that closed leaving indebted students without accredited degrees.

Now, with a president who personally created a fake university that was itself a debt trap, we may be in for hard times in the struggle for economic equity as far as debt relief is concerned. Yet people are starting to wake up to the fact that the future, hopes, and dreams of entire generations are being transformed into enormous profits for Wall Street.

We are finally coming to see, clearly, that this system is undemocractically maintained by giant companies like Blackrock. And yet, these corporations are nothing without our money to gamble with. We retain incredible power if we can only come together in recognition that all of our debts are connected and that we can leverage our power as debtors to demand debt forgiveness.

We hope you enjoyed looking at Debtfair. We ask you to consider joining in order to help build more information about how the debt industry affects art and culture.

Debt resistance now!

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