tv Democracy Now LINKTV August 10, 2015 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
>> that's it, ladies and gentlemen. [applause] the motion passes. amy: in a historic move, the american psychological association has voted to bar psychologists from participating in national security interrogations after the apa was exposed for colluding with the cia and military's torture program. >> this represents american psychologist rejoining the 17th century and repudiating torture as a means of state power. yeah, i think there is an element of, about time, but i think it is great. amy: then to here in venice, italy, where artists from around the world are gathering for the the creative time summit here at the venice biennale, the oldest and most prestigious international art exhibition. >> bring activists and artists together to discuss the intersection of art and politics in the 21st century.
with annell speak pasternak, the new director of the brooklyn museum, and nato thompson of creative time. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy! now, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. in ferguson, missouri, police shot and critically injured an african american teenager on sunday night amid the protests commemorating the first anniversary of the death of michael brown. "the st. louis post" is identifying the teen as 18-year-old tyrone harris, a graduate of normandy high school. tyrone harris' father told the "post-dispatch" his son and michael brown were "very close." the police say four officers opened fire on tyrone harris after he shot at them. he shot at them with a nine millimeter gun from the scene. a video posted to twitter by a ferguson activist appears to
show a police officer standing over tyrone harris' body as he lies on the ground, his hands cuffed behind his back, with blood on his white t-shirt. in the video, the activist pleads with the officer to get the young man some help. >> give him some help, man. please, get him some help. he is bleeding out. please, get him some help, man. please, get him some help. he is bleeding out. you see it. he is breathing. please, get him some help. amy: tyrone harris was later taken to the hospital, where he remains in critical condition. earlier sunday, protesters commemorated the death of michael brown with a four and a half minute moment of silence to mark the number of hours brown's body lay in the street. his father, michael brown, sr., also led a march this weekend. >> i would not even care if there were listing or not, i just want to get on the tv and let them know i'm not stopping. >> what does that mean?
>> every time you turn on your tv, you're going to see my face. i am trying to make it uncomfortable for people who think it is ok to do this to us. amy: in seattle, black lives matter protesters interrupted presidential candidate bernie sanders during a campaign speech saturday to call for a commemoration of michael brown's death and to demand sanders do more for racial justice. seattle activist marissa janae johnson took the microphone and said that if sanders is really part of a grassroots movement, then he will be more vocal in his support for black lives matter. >> tomorrow is the one year anniversary of the ruthless murder of michael brown. honor thatthat we here and now. sanders, the biggest grassroots movement in this
country right now is the blacklivesmatter movement. amy: following the interruption, sanders published a statement saying he was "disappointed" by the interruption. the following day, he published a racial justice platform on his campaign website. it includes demilitarizing the police, addressing voter disenfranchisement, banning private prisons, and ending the war on drugs. meanwhile, in texas, the fbi is investigating the death of 19-year-old christian taylor, an unarmed african american college football player who was fatally shot by a white police officer in the dallas suburb of arlington on friday. authorities say that police shot taylor after he did not comply with initial calls to surrender during what authorities are describing as a potential burglary at a car dealership. the officer has been placed on administrative leave. taylor had spoken out against police brutality on social media. in a now much-circulated tweet
from late july, he wrote -- "i don't want to die too young." in turkey, at least eight people have died in attacks on turkish security forces, including an attack on a police station in istanbul and a roadside bomb that killed police officers in the southeast province of sirnak. gunmen also fired at the u.s. consulate in istanbul. meanwhile, thousands of people in istanbul, paris and cologne, germany, held peace rallies over the weekend to denounce the turkish government's attacks against the kurdistan workers' party, known as the pkk, which began in late july. in mexico, an activist who has led the search for the missing 43 students in the southern state of guerrero was found shot dead inside a taxi on saturday. the activist, miguel angel jimenez, had uncovered mass graves near the city of iguala,
where the 43 students disappeared after an attack by local police in 2014. in news from africa, at least 12 people died in mali following a hostage situation at a hotel in the trading town of sevare. five of the dead are u.n. workers. the army said that the gunmen are affiliated with the macina liberation movement, an islamist group. in yemen, officials say a strike from the u.s.-backed, saudi-led coalition killed at least 20 so-calledhters in a friendly fire incident on this saturday. comes as the president of the international red cross visited yemen and called the situation "catastrophic." in news from afghanistan, three -- multiple explosions in the capital city of kabul killed over 40 people on friday in
attacks outside a military base, u.s. special operations forces base, and police academy. on saturday, a suicide bomber killed 29 people at a meeting of pro-government forces in the northern kunduz province. another attack outside the airport killed at least five .eople the wave of violence comes as the taliban reorganized its leadership following the recent announcement of the death of former leader amar. in news from the west bank, hundreds of palestinians attended the funeral for the father of an 18-month-old baby killed in an arson attack by jewish settlers two weeks ago. dawabsheh succumbed to injuries. the rest of the family remains hospitalized. the board of the american psychological association voted nearly unanimously to adopt a new policy barring psychologists from participating in national security interrogations. the new rules come after an independent investigation
documented the association's long-running complicity in post-9/11 torture and close collaboration with officials at the pentagon and cia. more on the vote that took place in toronto after the headlines. in news from colorado, a jury has sentenced james holmes to live without parole for the 2012 aurora movie theater massacre, which killed 12 people and wounded 70 more. prosecutors had sought the death penalty, but jurors did not unanimously agree. holmes had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. and republican presidential front-runner donald trump has sparked outrage with his comments implying that fox news debate moderator megyn kelly was asking him tough questions during the first presidential debate because she was having her period. he made the comments speaking on cnn friday. >> she gets out and she starts asking me all sorts of rigid kilis questions.
you know, he could see there was blood coming out of her eyes. blood coming out of her, wherever. amy: following the comments, donald trump was disinvited from a conservative event in atlanta where he was slated to be the keynote speaker. the organizer of the redstate gathering event, erick erickson, explained his decision. >> after all of this was over, mr. trump when on twitter and said i was a week and that it leader, which is ok, i actually think it is weak and pathetic to say a tough question from a journalist and assume she is having her period and that is why she asked you a tough question. amy: among the many to criticize trump for the comments is republican candidate carly fiorina. trump fired back at fiorina, writing on twitter that she gives him "a massive headache." and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman.
by a nearly unanimous vote, the american psychological association's council of representatives voted friday to adopt a new policy barring psychologists from participating in national security interrogations. the resolution also puts the apa on the side of international law by barring psychologists from working at guantanamo, cia black sites, and other settings deemed illegal under the geneva conventions or the u.n. convention against torture unless they are working directly for the persons being detained or for an independent third party working to protect human rights. the vote came at the apa's first convention since the release of a report confirming the apa leadership actively colluded with the pentagon and the cia torture programs. for the past decade, a group of dissident psychologists have protested the involvement of psychologists to conduct interrogations at cia black sites and guantánamo.
moved to rewrite the organization's ethics policy. for years they were ignored and ridiculed. but that changed with the recent release of the "hoffman report," a 542-page independent review commissioned by the apa's board of directors. the study undermined the apa's repeated denials and confirmed some of the apa's leaders were complicit in torture. following the release, four top apa officials resigned, announced early retirements or were forced out. democracy now! was in toronto to capture the historic american psychological association vote. here are some highlights in the minutes before the vote. this is apa president-elect susan mcdaniel. >> we are here today to reset our moral compass and ensure our organization is headed in the right direction. as i said on wednesday, i
believe in psychologists capacity to make the world a better place. we are here today to decide how to do that. and next in order of what you saw as priorities, is the prohibition on psychologists participating in interrogation in military or intelligence context. motion isw substitute here to rectify 10 years of deceitful and underhanded and secret collusion to impede the will of the membership. so what we're doing and what we added -- and we added this in full collaboration with the board -- the non-recused board, is to rectify that, which is why puts ance and for all, prohibition on psychologists being involved in those national security intellect --
interrogations as all other health professionals are prohibited from that. it doesn't stop training in general about what makes a non-harmful interrogation, but stops us from being involved in these abusive circumstances. it puts our moral compass right. >> understood him for division 53 clinical child adolescent psychology. i want you to take a clear look right here, right now. we note the research. we know if you push off the humidity to another person, it is easy to engage in torture, but this is the face of people who were tortured. it is people of my race, of my ethnicity, of my faith that were silenced and tortured by psychologist in the name of apa policies and this is the time to act and correct our course. and everyone out there in the galley, and the peanut gallery as we saw affectionately call
it, thank you, for coming here and thank you for setting our moral compass right. [applause] >> i am here representing student and his -- constituency. christine, my colleague spoke yesterday to a survey we had. i am quoting "i chose to study psychology because i perceived it as a field that shared my values of social justice. after reading thbetrayed. the next one, "my reaction was one of concern, but i was not surprised. ashamed that our students are not surprised by these actions. [applause] james. morning, larry abuse and rights, no
torture, who is going to disagree with that? but i'm worried about second or third effects, unintended consequences. so i need to know does international law supersede u.s. law? because of the answer is yes, this has dire negative consequences for all federal employees, particularly, the v.a. and department of homeland defense. psychologistsg, and independent practice and the chair elect of the council leadership team. what is torture? you know, we sb -- spent a lot of the last decade talking about torture as if we knew what it was, but there's actually a lot of fine print involved in the resolutions that we have adopted about torture. and a lot of fine print that i suppose most of us, i hope, all of us, i hope, would not agree with, which actually means we tacitly,ttingly,
consciously even, supported the bush administration's manipulation of the definition of torture in such a way that it constitutes inhumane and degrading, and cruel treatment and punishment. this resolution corrects that with thes us in line geneva convention and international definition of torture. >> so now we're voting on the main motion. the secretary will call the roll. >> can of atoms. >> yes. >> yes. >> approved. >> yes. >> yes. >> yes. >> yes.
>> that's it, ladies and gentlemen. [applause] the motion passes. amy: that was friday's historic vote by the american psychological association barring psychologists from participating in national security interrogations. retired colonel larry james, who cast the sole dissenting boat was the former top army , intelligence psychologist at guantánamo. he was also at abu ghraib. moments after the vote, i spoke to two of the leading dissidents psychologists who have been pushing the apa to reverse its stance on interrogation for nearly a decade. >> i am a member of council of the apa and i'm a cofounder of the coalition for ethical psychology. amy: can you explain what happened? >> after nine years of collusion and deceit between the american
psychological association and the department of defense and the bush administration, after nine years of what has now become a major scandal, the apa council, the apa -- sorry, the ,pa council turned that around the apa council acknowledged it of been led down a deceitful path that all of our policies in the past, which claims to uphold human rights, or shams. a today for the first time, we passed a real policy that upholds human rights and prohibits psychologists from being involved in any way in torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment insofar as those are part of national security interrogations into cheney conditions -- any way that our national security office gratis abuses -- apparatus abuses detainees, we're saying that we are posted at and demand human rights be
applied in all cases in the no psychologists liver participate in any detention camp, in any in theirogation, because of rvs is going on and we want to stop this abuses. amy: what is the resolution was passed? >> first of all, it simply holds a bright line against any psychologist being involved in any national security interrogations or detention conditions. it is a bright line. it doesn't matter who determines it or not. tookd, what we did is we the decision on what is the judgment, what is torture, umane away from the united states reservations and aligned apa standards with international standards, with the united nations convention,
with the united nations cap made and tours, what they say is now apa policy. vowed to their judgment and we will follow it. amy: what is a national security interrogation? >> any interrogation or any conditions of confinement in support of an interrogation that takes place outside of the protections of domestic, criminal law. so it could be for the dod. it could be for the fbi. it could be the cia. it could be in black sites. it could be fined governments that do interrogations on our behalf. it could be either contractors. we are prohibited psychologists from being involved in any of those. human exception has to do with domestic law enforcement where constitutional law, maranda rights apply that we carve that
out for the time being. we are fully aware that abuses go on domestically as well and we're very concerned about that. but this particular issue has to do with the fact that responsibles were for our nation's torture program. and now the apa is no longer supporting psychologists in those roles, but actively and clearly opposing any possibility of psychologists claim those roles. amy: what a summit does participate? what does it mean to pass the resolution? >> that would be very serious because this resolution is impermissible. we are moving to make sure that such people will be held accountable for ethics violations. if someone is held accountable for an ethics violation at the american psychological association, that is in turn en through sears the by
state licensing boards. for people to violate this resolution, their license can be on the line. so i am going to put it going the other way. what this does is it protects psychologists in the military, and national security settings. it lets them know they have the apa behind them when they refuse to participate in any torture, cruel, inhumane or the grading treatment. we have their back. they're obligated to refuse him and we will support them. amy: can a psychologist participate in any cia or pentagon interrogation? >> no. this point, they cannot participate in a such interrogation whatsoever. amy: how many psychologists does that affect? >> we don't have the exact number. i don't think it is thousands, probably hundreds. i'm glad to say for them it is now clear what the ethics responsibilities are and they will now represent psychology and away we can all trust.
i'm hoping this is a huge step towards the profession regaining the public trust, which is what we have to do. amy: is there anything else you want to accomplish shared this apa meeting? >> well, there are many things i want took a pleasure this meeting, but i am totally satisfied with this one. amy: and your response? you are wearing a button that says -- >> first, do no harm. this is the result of nearly a decade of effort by hundreds and thousands of people. we have been spokespersons, but there been many, many, many people involved in this. when the membership of the apa spoke in 2008 in a referendum, they voted 59% to get psychologists out of guantanamo and cia black sites, but a small group of insiders undermine that. this reverses that after seven years of deceit.
it is a victory for a movement. i also want to emphasize that it is a victory for the anti-torture movement will stop that the apa has moved from being complicit in the state sanction torture to being among the leaders in dealing with state sanction torture and taking strong policies and moving its members out and taking or beginning level of accountability for the people in the association who, too, were involved in this. i think the apa moves from the back of the pack to being a model for other parts of society about how to deal with this. amy: can you talk about the organizing attempt to get to this place after almost a decade? >> well, it was basically for many of us, it was basically our life for the last decade. writing hundreds of articles, organizing psychologists, making alliances with human rights groups, alerting them to what was going on, working within
apa, getting on the council like jeanmarie arrigo, working outside so to work the public, working with reporters, getting the public and the apa leadership to realize this was a major issue, and this was a scandal that could not be allowed to stand. involved it takes people and dedicated people, and we have a lot of them. amy: would you like to add to that? >> i want to say how grateful we are to the entire community that we worked with. we have our talents, but there are enormous talents that it required or are required to change the world. when challenge of people get together and are dedicated -- when talented people get together and are dedicated to human rights, human welfare, using our individual skills for good, it may take 10 years like this one did, but this shows it is possible to make a significant change.
because right now, even the obama administration is on notice that the american psychological association is opposed to some of the policies that are still in existence -- for example, interrogation policy of the obama administration includes the army whichmanual appendix n uses techniques or permits techniques that have been banned by the u.n. committee against torture. today, the america psychological association is saying to the obama administration that we inhuman,that cruel, integrating treatment and none of our members can participate in any of those activities. it is time for you to change that army field manual, time for the u.s. to follow the american psychological association and ban any technique, any condition bet is considered still to torture, cruel, degrading
treatment. we want to lead the way and have the obama administration follow us. amy: how many people are on the council? >> 172. the vote was overwhelmingly in favor. there was only one opposed. amy: that person opposed? >> larry james. and larry james has been a strong voice to keep psychologist in those settings in the interrogation room and once he was part of that she was bent thehe group that american psychological association's rules, was say, and policies in a way that was secret, and i would say, part of what the hoffman investigation interrogated. but that doesn't mean he doesn't actually have his own strong feelings about that, which he expressed. amy: and worked at guantánamo. >> he did. he was supervising these
interrogations. amy: and in dayton, ohio. >> i believe he is at wright state. what is important today is that larry james was the lone voice, that everyone else on this council who voted yes or no, everyone else voted in favor of this i'll see change. -- policy change. refusals, butew we voted overwhelmingly in favor and he was the lone voice against. amy: why was this so important to you personally? why did you wage this tenure battle? >> well, i come from a family where people were tortured in the holocaust. i have seen what happens when standards of decency, human rights, and ethics are thrown out in a wave of to tell a terry and or -- totalitarian or
zeal, when ahe ol government turns to the dockside and breaks the rules in favor of whatever they want. i've spent my life trying to uphold those standards, trying to make it -- i'm a psychologist because i believe we answer to an authority that have what is right, not what is law. what is law can be twisted into evil. so this particular fight, when i said psychologist's were part of this come to psychologists reasoning there expertise strategically to help torture and abuse, that they were behind this, i knew i had to speak out. and i did. i did not expected to lead to this. i just spoke out. i'm a psychoanalyst. i usually sit behind a couch silently. but i needed to speak out. and then we joined together with a group of people who felt the same way, and we made the change. amy: and for you, personally,
why this was so important? >> i kind of wandered into it by writing an article on the apa, but it became clear after a while that if a small group of people did not really keep the struggle up, they were going to get away with it. was i was a kid, my euro henry david throw who sat in a jail cell, maybe only for a night, but -- because he was opposed to slavery. the image of standing up, and as expected my wife sometimes it would be preoccupied when i should pay more attention to her and my family, i said, i just can't be one of those who doesn't stand up when i have the opportunity. i can't live with myself if that is the case. whove always admired those did. this was my time to do it. and i knew if a few of us did not keep it up, this policy would keep on. and i could not live with that. amy: do you feel like you made
history today? >> definitely. >> i do. amy: psychoanalyst dr. steven reisner and stephen soldz, founding members of coalition of other goals society. voting to ban psychologist from national security interrogations. i also spoke with the president-elect of the british psychological society. >> and president-elect of the british psychological society, representing them here at the apa. thoughts for today? i think is wonderful. i think it is great. i think is well overdue. oh shacking earlier this represents -- i was checking earlier, this represents united states repudiating torture at state power. i think there's an element of about time. i think it is great. as i read it, the agreement is withcan psychologists
respect agreed international definitions of the abuse of detainees and agreed international standards for judicial process. we should not be involved in abusing detainees and we should remain within domestic and international law. that strikes me as common sense. it is what the public would expect. it is about bloody time. amy: that is peter can are men, president-elect of the british psychological society. speaking in toronto, canada. to see all of our coverage of the historic apa vote, you can go to our website democracynow.org. when we come back from break, we will talk about what is happening here in venice, italy, the oldest biennial art exhibition in the world. we will talk politics and art. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
prisoners," dave rovics. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we are broadcasting from venice, italy, the site of the venice biennale, the oldest and most prestigious international art exhibition. the theme this year is all the world's futures. in an introduction to the binennale, the curator okwui enwezor writes -- "how can artists, thinkers, writers, composers, choreographers, singers, and musicians, through images, objects, words, movement, actions, lyrics, sound bring together publics in acts of looking, listening, responding, engaging, speaking in order to make sense of the current upheaval?" we will speak to okwui enwezor, the curator of the venice biennale tomorrow. this year's binennale has not been without controversy. many countries have art exhibits inside. in may, the city of venice shut down iceland's contribution to
the binennale after the artist christoph büchel, working in collaboration with the muslim communities of venice and iceland, turned a 10th century church that had been closed down for 40 years into a working mosque. police claimed the art project was a threat to public safety. last week, the gulf labor coalition staged an hour-long occupation of the second floor of the israeli pavilion. the group has also protested the use of migrant laborers to build guggenheim's new museum in abu dhabi. on sunday, the gulf labor coalition held a panel discussion called "who needs , museums and biennales." i spoke to one of the speakers after the event. >> i'm a member of the collective of venice. amy: can you tell us what it is? >> an independent space for arts and cultural production.
if we occupied the space in 2007, a was an abandoned warehouse, in the heart of venice. when i say we, a group of artists, art workers, and activist and also our students of the different university of arts in venice. in 2007, the reason we decided to occupy this ancient space, which is owned by the city, by the way, so the property is the property of the city, was because at the time we were witnessing a new development of the city, meaning that from being the traditional museum city that everyone knows, venice with gondolas in the art history, we were seeing the fact a new economist contemporary art, contemporary culture were growing. this was an extremely interesting development, but we had many contradictions and many, many kind of dark sides,
let's say. it is the fact these investments were investments that were made, for example, by financial tycoons that really used art as a kind of tool that can boost their statutes, or -- statues, or the rich are institutions and foundations were and are using unpaid workers. and as people who are living in venice and work in venice, we needed a space that could become a point of view on this development, which is economic, social, and political will stop in at the same time, was a laboratory so we not only were protesting, but organized and seminars,xhibitions, actions, publications and so on. amy: can you tell us the history of venice in a nutshell? but for people who perhaps know it as the city of canals, but
tell us about venice. city and is a unique still is -- i mean, i think what is really, really extremely unique in venice besides the fact that it is beautiful, and that of course is banal, but it is real, is the fact the city was an incredible balance between the human people intervening, and respect for the environment. this is something that one throughout old history of venice, which is a history that 1000 now, for example, if we refer to the present time, this history of a unique balance between human intervention -- intervention and nature is now put in danger for example by the sheep's yet seen here passing inside the canal.
the monsters of the sea, the huge ships the really passing in front of the set mark a square are both a serious threat to the environment, lagoon, which is a very kind of delicate and unique environment. and i mention this because the says more about what we do in our group. we're not only focused on art and art things, but we are an active space in nature with realities, our social organization and movements in venice. for example, we're also very much committed to the struggle against the crew ships, which is now crucial in venice and one of the things that moore is posing a threat to the history of the city. amy: are you concerned about climate change here? >> we're pretty much concerned about climate change. is impacted by climate
change, not only venice, but it's mainland also for example, you come from the u.s., not later than a few weeks ago, what goesppening near venice, to venice, a tornado, which we usually see in the u.s. and we don't see so often here in italy or venice. only as was of course symptom, but a clear symptom of climate change affect, climate change happening. it was extremely destructive and tragic fori think, venice. but of course, the other issue is raising of the average of the sea level. we are in a lagoon. we are very close to the sea. so in a way, if all of the prediction about the raising of the sea levels are real, we must be worried. we must be worried because we could be one of the first cities to go underwater more than we already experience high tide and so on.
and it is a city of canals because, basically, venice is now the result of a few of different islands that were linked to bridges. that is why we're gondolas and boats and so on because in the first years of venice, venice was not as you see it now, was not different islands linked, but they were islands without bridges. so it is really -- that is how venice was founded and developed. amy: and with austerity sweeping the continent, of course, in greece and spain, how did that affect italy and how does that affect biennale, the venice biennale, which is so well known for this massive exhibition of art that is -- also has a lot of support from the state, and the united states conservatives may say, i agree with his critique, biennale should not be
supported, the art shouldn't be supported? >> this happened in italy even before austerity. so our politicians did not need austerity or crisis to not support art. and forcefully, this is a typical feature in a tie and politics, especially during the trying years of the berlusconi government. said,nister of culture you don't eat with culture. he said, if you don't eat with culture, we are not funding it. so unfortunately, apart from such big and important international events and tradition of events like the biennale, the public funds for nonexisting.t concerning austerity, of course we are a mediterranean country. impacteds we're deeply -- affected by crisis and we are on the edge with austerity, of austerity policies, which were
hit in italy very hard, not as hard as greece, but probably the the troikae meaning the so-called european institutions ask to the governments of italy, brutal reforms, reforms that really are going to the direction of welfare, toing to culture, to environment, and so on. unfortunately, we must say that right wing and left us politicians in italy, really obedient to this command of austerity, of the truck of. speaking of austerity, another huge problem is housing policies, for example, that the private market of houses is completely crazy, out of control. for example, if you come here come just walk around and you don't see it, but there are networks of people who occupy apartments that are very, very
large. i mean, there is an organization sc, and this is a network of more than 50 occupied apartments in venice. it puts together migrants, young people, students but also finish and families, families that before austerity could not -- i mean, could pay the rent and after austerities and with the crisis, they cannot pay this rent anymore. amy: can you tell us the history of the venice biennale, what it means? >> it is a very complex history but the venice biennale was the first biannual founded in 1895 and since then, it really -- it developed out of the model of " which allxhibition the different nations were bringing their last technological discoveries and so on. mode from theis
word "expo" and basically adapted to the arts. so that is why the biennale was organized with national and still is organized with national pavilions. and the biennale has a very complex story of political and economic ties with the city, too. of course, there is only official history of the biennale , but there's a very strong counter history and counter narrative of the biennale. 1968,ke today about problems that were happening in venice -- amy: where are the protests happening? >> because it was 1968 in the basically was a war revolution going on. of course, it was a big-time for social movements all over the world and venice was no exception to this stream of protests. in the protest touched the biennale. the biennale was accused of basically repeating a: nihilistic does a colonialist it
view them of being a nationalistic event from a very, very much tied to the official politics of the cultures that were here. and the interesting thing is, after this protests, the biennale basically started a very radical institutional reform because it needed to be a more democratic, more democratic institution. at the time, the statue of the biennale was the statute written android to by the fascists, by mussolini. so it was still that kind of institutional structure the biennale had. activistspresent time work in venice are keeping to approach the biennale from a critical point of view. of course, problems are pretty much different from those that
you could find in 1968, but you still have many different problems when come to such an art event. i'm just mentioning two of them, which we touched in today's discussion. first of all, the problem of labor. the biennale is a very rich institution, lots of money, art, invested by both private and public institutions here. the biennale generates a large amount of labor, but this labor is precarious or is largely unpaid. there is a problem, for example, with university internships. we don't know how many diversity in terms of work for -- entrance work for free, not directly, but for the exhibitions that happened in the city. the second problem is the problem of the relationship between the exhibition and the city. so we're speaking of the very
famous -- how it works as the venetian version. basically, this 100 or so events that you have in town pay very high rent to be here in town. -- to who this money goes they go to the pockets of the landlords of the city. it goes to the pockets of real estate, owners and actors in the city. that is why we see a paradox. we're trying to intervene within contradictions, by creating an alternative model of the pavilion, for example, in which is basically the city and the people working for the city which takes advantage of an event like the biennale in which the labor is fairly paid. this is only one examples of what we do. say, -- re
speaking at the venice biennale. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. when we come back, we will be joined by the president and curator of creative time, which is holding a summit at the biennale here today through wednesday. we will be back in a minute. ♪ [music break]
this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we are broadcasting from venice, italy, the site of the venice biennale, the oldest and most prestigious international art exhibition. as part of the art festival, the new york-based group creative time is hosting a three-day summit dubbed the curriculum. speakers include afghan president ashraf ghani with his daughter, the artist mariam ghani, as well as the famed italian political philosopher and activist antonio negri. we're joined right now by and pasternak, the president of creative time and the new president, the incoming president of the oakland museum. she is leaving her job as president and artistic director of creative time. nato thompson is with us, chief curator of creative time and author of the new book, "seeing power: socially engaged art in the age of cultural production." anne and nato, welcome to democracy now.
let's start with you, the significance of the biennale and create of time thing here? >> that say this is a very rare opportunity to have artist can been from all around the world to talk about art and social change. we often hear that artist provide an mirror to our times. in today's artists doing much more, they are for -- getting into the gritty work of actual social change work, working with communities, working on legislation, policy all over the world tackling the big issues. that is what we're here to discuss and be inspired by. amy: nato, if you could talk about creative times roll in the biennale -- it is the first time he will be holding this kind of summit. >> is very unique to have an organization like ours come in and do a summit here, the first in history of the biennale itself. what is also magical is it is an international exhibition, but in some ways it is an international summit.
players around the globe, using the venue as the space to discuss and think. amy: it is interesting and you been with creative time for more than two decades? >> honest 21 years. amy: now you're going to a brick-and-mortar institution in making some history yourself as a woman going to do brooklyn museum. >> the brooklyn museum has a long history of not only artistic excellence and having an encyclopedic global collection, but also standing up for things that we believe in a creative time. artists have the opportunities to experiment that our cultural institutions in our public spaces as places of free exchange of ideas, places for democracy to be enacted. so i'm looking forward to going to a museum, having a collection to work with, but also to think about how we can think of the museum as a place of true democracy. amy: and the people that are coming for this creative time summit, nato, talk about what went into the thinking of bringing them together.
you have the president of afghanistan, you have this leading radical philosopher. >> it is, conflict of rhythm in the sense that you have grassroots activists that are kind of skeptical of famous people but also you people in political positions. we have a cultural minister from the spanish left-wing , academics, pademos politicians, some are very dear you, but also those in the trenches who no one would know their names, but they're doing the hard work. we think that is the kind of spectrum of radical politics we want in one room. also, geographically split. you have south africa, argentina, the united states, western europe. we think it is important to have that kind of spectrum in one room. and it is exciting. amy: anne, in the united states it is controversial to have arts funded. there's a big battle with conservatives, yet here you have in italy, the venice biennale.
it is over 100 years old. countries, and together from all over the world. you also have repressive regimes , they have pavilions. you have governments like iceland the just had their pavilion shut down by the venetian authority because the artist they commissioned turned the church that they were given as their space, it was a church that had not been used in 40 years, into a mosque. >> right. the truth is, people often think about art in terms of beauty. and it is wonderful when we can go into a museum and lessee, a bellini, which i just all this money, of the christ ascending. and they are in utter agony as they're looking at their dead savior. it is a beautiful painting. we think about beauty. it you also have to think about the actual emotions of the death of the savior, right? in the agony of christ.
the artists are not only dealing with beauty, they're dealing with a very real issues of our time. and they are freethinkers. they are seeing the world. they are our american we need them to be free. and sometimes the things that they communicate and experience are going to be very difficult and very painful. and that is appropriate. amy: the guggenheim is come up, the gulf labor committee that is part of the venice biennale talked about the guggenheim and what is happening with the labor force that is building it and i would be. you signed on to the petition around the guggenheim? >> i sign on to the fact that artist should have -- in a condemned should have free range of movement to come in and out of these regions and to speak freely. creative time as i was been a proponent of free expression. these are inevitable consequences and difficulties we have as our world has become truly global in the art market
has become truly global as we see here in the venice biennale, that they're going to be conflicting traditions and economies and histories that we have to come together and work through, and we have to listen very carefully and respect people's rights, their basic human rights, and work together to produce change. calledto, your book is "seeing power: art and activism , in the twenty-first century." >> we lived in -- live in an era where this is evident from the arab spring to wall street, it is not here and here, it is mixed. with that comes a lot of tension and complexities in the book is thinking through that. amy: want to thank you both for being with us, nato thompson and anne pasternak of creative time, though and is going to become president of the brooklyn museum. that doesn't row broadcast. special thanks to our crew here venice -- mike burke, amy littlefield, john hamilton denis moynihan.