- February 9, 2023
- 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
- On campus
Fred Hampton once remarked “theory’s cool but theory with no practice ain’t s**t.” What does it take to put in practice the theory that art is labor, and to stimulate art workers to embrace the labor organizing discourse in their enduring struggle to secure labor standards and a living wage for the work they do?
In this talk Praznik will discuss the limits of maverick or individual attacks on the institution of art and the normalized practice of unpaid labor in contrast with the power of collective action. The talk will present the ways in which labor organizing practice is relevant for countering the pervasive ideology of creativity and artists as model neoliberal workers thriving on freedom, self-reliance and autonomy. Praznik will argue that organizing is the solution to end of exploitation of labor in the context of institutionalized Western art world(s). What is more, it holds the promise of emancipation of art as a form of work that is not available only to the privileged upper classes but to anyone who wants to practice it (and until there’s capitalism to get paid for such labor).