Damien Hirst has surprised the art world again by announcing that he will reignite his relationship with Parisian gallerist, Emmanuel Perrotin, who in 1991, was one of the first two dealers to exhibit the artist. Perrotin considers Hirst to be an old friend and claims to be the only dealer to never profit from Hirst’s stardom. It is too early to tell, but it is suggested that a solo exhibition will be scheduled for 2010, but neither Hirst nor Perrotin have indicated if this is the beginning of a longer lasting artist-dealer relationship. Perrotin and Hirst’s partnership comes after Hirst’s infamous Sotheby’s auction, “Beautiful Inside My Head Forever,” in which noted art critic Robert Hughes accused Hirst of cutting dealers out of the action. “Everyone has written that Hirst wanted to bite the hand that fed him,” says Perrotin. “But there’s a difference between asserting independence and turning your back on dealers.” Whether Hirst is playing a well-calculated ironic card out of his ever-evolving deck or simply scratching the back that once scratched his own is still to be seen.
Tel Aviv – Jaffa has been in turmoil these past years, with little to celebrate. Rents have gone up constantly, air pollution is getting worse, longtime residents are evicted from their homes and skyscrapers reserved exclusively for millionaires are springing up in its neighborhoods. Many residents are made to feel that they are a burden upon the municipality, which has shunted off its responsibility towards them, principally serving the interests of building contractors and real estate speculators.
The fallout has widened these past two years, to embrace additional groups hitherto not affected. At different locations across the city, protest groups have sprung up, reaching a climax in June 2007 when hundreds attended a protest rally at the Cinematheque under the slogan: “Tel Avivians, wake up!” The months following that protest produced conditions for consolidation of all these campaigns into A “city for all of us” – a single unified urban movement representing the broad interest of a majority of the city’s residents – rather than those of the moneyed elite. The movement has grown into a network embracing hundreds of activists.
A “city for all” is not associated with any party active at the national or local level, as illustrated by its membership: the movement includes religious traditionalists and secular individuals, residents of the southern neighborhoods alongside those living north of the Yarkon; pensioners and high school pupils, professors and students, Jews and Arabs, men and women, longtime social activists alongside rookies, right and left, members of parties from all across the political spectrum.
A “city for all” is not a protest group: it is an urban political movement which does not rest content with marking out areas calling for reform, instead preferring to put forward detailed practical plans for every aspect of life in the city. These plans have been worked out by leading experts from among the movement’s members.
A “city for all” intends to restore the city to its residents. It is the people of this city – not the skyscrapers – that make it so enthralling. Together we will restore the city to its people. It depends on no one but us, the city’s residents. Join the thousands already taking part in the historic turnabout so vital for the city! Come along to our meetings. Talk with our activists. Talk with friends and neighbours. Together we shall restore the city to its residents and make it into a place that is good, healthy and fun to live. A city for us all.
To find out details of their vision and their practical plans, about their position on vital issues on the city’s agenda, and ways of getting involved in the election campaign – click here.