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America through the eyes of Andres Serrano

A discussion on art and politics

programme editor
Sperm, dead bodies, or a crucifix submerged in his urine. The American artist, Andres Serrano, is renowned for his controversial artwork. His profane images oppose the conservative values of the American government: think of Christianity, drug prohibition and a ban on lgbtqia+ rights. His latest work revolves more around outspoken political themes, such as Donald Trump and the insurrection at the US Capitol. During this evening, journalist Laila Frank sits down with Serrano to discuss art and politics.

After 9/11 Andres Serrano started working on his America series, including symbols of 9/11, photographs of 115 Americans, and his famous portrait of Donald Trump, a representation of the American Dream. In 2022, he presented his first-ever film project Insurrection, about the attack on the United States Capitol.

More about Andres Serrano

Andres Serrano (New York, 1950) engages with American society through photography, painting, sculpture and film. In 1987, he gained a reputation in the US with Piss Christ, an image of a crucifix submerged in his urine. His work fuelled debate on the freedom of artistic expression and public funding of controversial art.

In the Netherlands, too, Serrano’s exhibition A History of Sex (1997) at the Groninger Museum caused a stir. Serrano himself claims that shock or disgust are not his main goal. Instead, he names the artistry, the political relevance and the art-historical references as key intentions.

The one thing I always try to do, whether it’s photographs or with this film, is to give you something to react to. I’m not concerned too much about how you’re going to feel about it, good or bad, but the important thing is that you’re not indifferent. You can’t walk away from it, and say, ‘I didn’t feel nothing.

Andres Serrano

Speakers

Andres SerranoArtist | Photo by: Jindřich Nosek (NoJin)
Laila FrankModerator | Photo by: Marie Wanders

Exposition: America & Trump by Andres Serrano
From 23 March until 5 November, the work of Andres Serrano is exhibited in Forum Groningen.

The Game: All Things Trump © Andres Serrano
The Game: All Things Trump © Andres Serrano

More information about the exposition America & Trump by Andres Serrano in can be found here.

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