ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. - The Center for Curatorial Studies (CCS Bard) and the Human Rights Project at Bard College announced today that the curator and writer Galit Eilat has been selected as the fourth recipient of the Keith Haring Fellowship in Art and Activism.
Made possible through a grant from the Keith Haring Foundation, the Fellowship is an annual award for a scholar, activist, or artist to teach and conduct research in art and activism at Bard College.
Galit Eilat founded, and directed from 2001 to 2010, the Israeli Center for Digital Arts in Holon, which under her leadership became one of the pre-eminent sites for genuine collaborations between Israeli and Palestinian artists, as well as with art organizations from the Near East, former Eastern European bloc and the Balkans. In 2004, she co founded Maarav, an online arts and culture magazine, which she went on to edit until 2010. She was part of the team that developed a series of traveling seminars entitled ‘Liminal Spaces’ (2006-2009), which aspired primarily to establish an absent but essential platform for joint work, action, and dialogue between the Israeli and Palestinian art communities.
Between 2010 and 2013 she collaborated with the Van Abbemuseum on several projects, including Play VanAbbe, Picasso in Palestine, and the collection presentation. She served as artistic director of the Akademie der Künste der Welt, in Cologne, from (2012-13). She has curated and co curated many exhibitions, including the Polish Pavilion in Venice Biennale (2011), 32nd October Salon, Belgrade (2011), She was a member of the 31st Sao Paulo Bienal curatorial team between 2013-2015, and involved in projects from Kosovo, Ljubljana, Turkey, Poland, and elsewhere. She has taught and lectured in a range of universities, museums, and galleries, and has written extensively about art and politics.
In Eilat’s words, her work “creates conditions to untangle knowledge through collective encounters and experiences, ” part of a search for ways to “challenge the status quo in order to open a space to perceive the new, the unfamiliar, and possibilities for courageous actions in time.”
While at Bard, Eilat will pursue the current phase of her research titled “Syndrome of the Present,” investigating sovereignty, present conflicts, and eschatological movements through the 17th century myth of Westphalia. Her seminars in Human Rights and Curatorial Studies will also pursue this line of inquiry.
“Galit brings to Bard a wealth of knowledge about the different ways artistic practices get involved in, and can help us understand, struggles for justice today,” said Thomas Keenan, director of Bard’s Human Rights Project. “She embodies Keith Haring’s daring, and sometimes mischievous, work at the intersection of art and activism.”
Eilat will take up her one-year appointment in September 2017, and spend the fall semester teaching at the College. She succeeds architects and artists Sandi Hilal and Alessandro Petti, of Decolonizing Architecture in Beit Sahour, Palestine, who held the Fellowship for 2016-17. Prior recipients include Dutch artist Jeanne van Heeswijk, and Delhi-based artist Shuddhabrata Sengupta.
“The Keith Haring Fellowship in Art and Activism has proven one of the most dynamic cross-disciplinary programs at Bard that embodies our philosophy that what is taught, discussed, and learned at college can and should make positive change in the world. Galit’s work and methodologies are inspirational in this regard,” said Tom Eccles, Executive Director of CCS Bard.
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About the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College and the Human Rights Project at Bard College
Bard College seeks to realize the best features of American liberal arts education, enabling individuals to think critically and act creatively based on a knowledge and understanding of human history, society, and the arts. Two pioneering programs developed under this mission are the Center for Curatorial Studies and the Human Rights Project.
The Human Rights Project, founded at Bard in 1999, developed the first interdisciplinary undergraduate degree program in Human Rights in the United States. The Project maintains a special interest in freedom of expression and the public sphere, and through teaching, research, and public programs is committed to exploring the too-often neglected cultural, aesthetic, and representational dimensions of human rights discourse.
CCS Bard was founded in 1990 as an exhibition and research center for the study of late twentieth-century and contemporary art and culture and to explore experimental approaches to the presentation of these topics and their impact on our world. Since 1994, the Center for Curatorial Studies and its graduate program have provided one of the world’s most forward thinking teaching and learning environments for the research and practice of contemporary art and curatorship. Broadly interdisciplinary, CCS Bard encourages students, faculty, and researchers to question the critical and political dimension of art, its mediation, and its social significance.
Since 2009, CCS Bard and the Human Rights Project have collaborated on a series of seminars, workshops, research projects, and symposia aimed at exploring the intersections between human rights and the arts, and doing so in a manner that takes neither term for granted but in fact uses their conjunction to raise critical, foundational questions about each. While academic in nature, this research and teaching nevertheless draws heavily on the realm of practice, involving human rights advocates, artists, and curators.
About the Keith Haring Foundation
Keith Haring (1958-1990) generously contributed his talents and resources to numerous causes. He conducted art workshops with children, created logos and posters for public service agencies, and produced murals, sculptures, and paintings to benefit health centers and disadvantaged communities. In 1989, Keith established a foundation to ensure that his philanthropic legacy would continue indefinitely.
The Keith Haring Foundation makes grants to not-for-profit entities that engage in charitable and educational activities. In accordance with Keith’s wishes, the Foundation concentrates its giving in two areas: The support of organizations which provide educational opportunities to young people and the support of organizations which engage in education, prevention and care with respect to AIDS and HIV infection.
Keith Haring additionally charged the Foundation with maintaining and protecting his artistic legacy after his death. The Foundation maintains a collection of art along with archives that facilitate historical research about the artist and the times and places in which he lived and worked. The Foundation supports arts and educational institutions by funding exhibitions, educational programs, acquisitions and publications that serve to contextualize and illuminate the artist’s work and philosophy. www.haring.com