Trevor Smith on Rivane Neuenschwander: Transcript

In Watchword, Rivane Neuenschwander invites us to play a variation on magnetic poetry. Instead of a refrigerator, we have the world map. Onto this oceanic surface we’re invited to place words that connote responsibility, agency, and empowerment.

The artist has gleaned these from images of protest signs found on the internet. There are so many protest movements in the world today that they are in danger of becoming background noise.

I love how her game shifts our attention to the emotion and language that connect vastly disparate movements. I also love that she invites us to pin these words to our clothes to that we can wear them like a badge of honor.

Return to the artist page.

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