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Joan Jonas’s contribution to the Artists Against the Immigration Ban project.

Artists Come Together in Project Opposing Trump’s Travel Ban

Artists Danh Vo, Chitra Ganesh, Anicka Yi, Julie Mehretu, Liam Gillick, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Walid Raad, Joan Jonas, and Barbara Kruger have come together for Artists Against the Immigration Ban, a project organized by art historians Bettina Funcke and Amy Zion, writes Sarah Cascone of Artnet. Each artist has created a poster in protest of Trump’s travel ban, which, as of September 24, was revised to include Chad and North Korea. Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen are still on the list. Iraq and Sudan were dropped, though Iraqi citizens will be “subject to additional scrutiny.” Venezuelan government officials and their families are also not allowed into the US under the new order.

The project started in February after Funcke and Zion posted an online letter opposing Trump’s original travel restrictions, which were issued in January. Their missive received a lot of attention, so the women reached out to artists and asked if “they’d put the letter in their own words, if they’d rewrite it, or redesign it,” according to a representative for the project. The posters have been mailed to at least thirty museums across the United States. Every package was sent with a message asking the recipients to make their own decisions as to what should be done with the posters. “Artists don’t normally send stuff to museums out of the blue. If these get accepted into collections, it means that there’s a record of this time that’s very different from a protest or an exhibition,” said the project representative. The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the Art Institute of Chicago, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, are some of the institutions that have received posters.

“Nothing that Trump and his lackeys do should come as a surprise. When I hear people say they’re ‘shocked’ at whatever the latest episode of this manipulative and grotesquely tragic con is, it just makes my head spin. It’s that very lack of imagination that helped enable this takeover of resolute ignorance and raging white grievance,” said Barbara Kruger.

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