Yep, it is almost time for ArtBo the international art fair held in Bogota to have its third presentation….and it has NOT come without great controversy this time!
Because a number of well-known galleries in Bogota have been left out of the game!…and of course, their owner are mad…some have even spoken about setting up n event in opposition to the developing ArtBo fair….now that WOULD be interesting, and in my opinion a valid thing to do.
You see, here in Colombia, there is a strong belief (supported by several international studies) that there is, in general, a lot of corruption. Nooooooo! I hear you say, but yes – it is so, Joe. Generally they are speaking about government institutions.
Now, whether that be true or not. The fact is that the committee deciding which galleries could participate was populated by: the gallery owners who run the international galleries whose art will be presented and the Camera de Comercio de Bogota (who are holding the event).
Beatriz Esguerra, director of the gallery ArteConsultores, was asked to change her galleries program to suit the requirements of the ArtBo governing committee. When she did not comply her gallery was dropped. When she wrote to the governing committee for answers and a definition of what ArtBo 2007 participating rules were, she was given nothing but hot air replies. No explanation of the irregularities and incongruence’s that were obviously built in to the decision making process.
Time to Boycot Artbo 2007?
Is the Colombian art establishment corrupt?
If you are not running with the “power crowd” will you be left out?
Has the corruption come from outside/overseas or have overseas galleries been tainted?
Well, I believe there is probably a bit of truth to each of these questions…but should it make us boycott the ArtBo 2007 event? I would like to think that at least there should be a protest – by the galleries that do not have clear rulesby which to partcipate, by the artists who, at the end of the day are the ones being snubbed, and also by the art interested public who are only going to see what the ruling elite and controlling powers wish them to see.
Yes – this is not an art fair but a closed circuit of control.
I suggest ArtBo 2007 be boycotted. What do you think?