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Whitney Screens: Kota Ezawa

July 3–5

Online, via Vimeo

Engage with video art from the Museum's collection while you’re at home with Whitney Screens. This week's screening will present Kota Ezawa's National Anthem.

National Anthem is an animation that depicts NFL football players taking a knee during “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Protesting police violence against unarmed Black men, the practice was started in 2016 by San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Later Kaepernick filed a grievance against NFL owners for colluding against signing him because of his gesture of protest; he ultimately reached a settlement with the NFL on the matter. In June 2020, the NFL apologized for not supporting the protests. The subject of this work—like that of Ezawa’s 2002 animation of O. J. Simpson’s murder trial—encapsulates many issues that the artist has taken up over the years, including celebrity, race, violence, and politics, especially as they intersect in the media.

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