Desire for freedom-Palazzo Reale Milano, 2013

Desire for Freedom

Art in Europe since 1945
2013

30th Council of Europe Art Exhibition

Curators: Monika Flacke, Henry Meyric Hughes, Ulrike Schmiegelt

How do we wish to live? What should we orientate ourselves by? What roles should do politics, the state and society play, in helping us to live out our lives, as worthy human beings? Does our desire for a socially and ecologically secure future count as a basic human right?

The exhibition shows work by 113 artists from 28 countries in Europe, who have been concerned with the theme of freedom since 1945. Transcending all the inherited boundaries and divisions, it shows something of the enormous range of approaches to this question and of the variety of possible answers. Instead of attempting once more to examine the confrontation between the two power blocs in the Cold War, with their familiar ideological and political divisions, it seeks to trace their common roots in democracy and socialism, as offsprings of the Enlightenment. Both systems set themselves the challenge of realising the core values of the Enlightenment – Freedom, Equality and Human Rights.  But how were these to be understood?

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