Art as Global Citizenship
A Free, City-Wide Art Exhibition
Opening August 24, 2023
Guest Curator Christian Viveros-Fauné
Organized by writer and curator Christian Viveros-Fauné, Social Forms centers on the idea of art-as-a-social-form: contemporary and historical artworks that take the measure of their era in order to respond directly to the challenges of their time. Grounded in the current sociopolitical landscape as well as in regional and global histories, this expansive exhibition asks us to consider global power shifts taking place in contemporary society. Art is at the vanguard of this and other changes that propose redefinitions of our societies at every level, but also of experiments that trend toward greater global citizenship and an increasingly participatory culture. Social Forms: Art as Global Citizenship is designed to promote increased citizenship during a period of political polarization and retrenchment of civil liberties—where citizenship is a term used not to denote privileged political status but to propose a more inclusive category of belonging in the world.
The title of the exhibition is drawn from Social Forms: A Short History of Political Art, Viveros-Fauné’s 2018 book that profiles how artists have historically been at the forefront of political and social resistance. “There are several ideas behind the show,” Viveros-Fauné says. “Firstly, we want to reflect the many ways artists are working to understand the present moment. Second, we believe it’s important to place these artists and their works in conversation with examples of art-as-a-social-form from the 1960s onward. Lastly, Converge 45 and its partners want to locate Portland front and center as an imperfect but progressive American city where the era’s principal themes can be uniquely addressed through forward-looking cultural production.”