Where is the Art World Left?

During the Artists Space controversy (1979), they seem to have felt that white artists have a first amendment right to express their racism. They saw protest as an act of censorship of the artist’s right to express him- or herself. It did not matter to them that artist of color were “censored” out of the system altogether and could not express themselves on the same platform on the same issues as the white artists. Nor were they bothered that artists of color were excluded from defining themselves in the same arena although white artists could “define” them as subject matter in their work. The white feminists, on the other hand, seem to feel that their concerns are being sidetracked by too much concern for issues such as racism in the artworld. As one woman artist of color said to me, “they [the feminists] have engaged the artworld’s attention, and they fear that to divert to what they feel are not relevant issues would distract from their cause. They do not see it all coming from a common source.” More here.

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