One Can Not Be Too Careful

One can not be too careful

an exhibition-exploration of censorship and self-censorship in contemporary art

These days when all taboos seem to have been broken by the artistic avant-garde, we are still facing a paradox of censorship returning back to the arts. Due to rightwing turns in the policy of many countries censorship is becoming an integral part of culture nowadays. However, it is not always coming from the side of the government but also from society as a whole, from non-government organisations and even from within the artistic community. In these circumstances, it is often unclear where the fine line is between censorship that is protecting violated human rights and censorship that is suppressing alternative opinions, political dissent and counter-cultural expression. Is this line still legible?

It is not just radical or extremist voices that happen to come under censorship limitations. In this riot of censorship, often some harmless things are being prohibited in fear, in the words of Chekhov’s Man in a Case: “that it might lead to something” because “all sorts of things might happen” and “one can not be too careful”. On the other hand the dark side of those creations which never see the light is widening.

The situation of prohibition is like a frozen, arrested pregnancy. When something never comes to light it is becoming a monster. The impossibility of expression and being seen is making the inner field of defeat larger. The shadow is growing and the censored are becoming like Eve and Adam, being rejected from Paradise, they are raving it up, generally taking the piss and enjoying their shit (we mean sin).

The exhibition “One can not be too careful” aims to explore the phenomena of censorship and self-censorship in the contemporary art world. The artist’s perception of censorship, their artworks that have been rejected due to censorship and self-censorship will be exhibited together with the descriptions and documentation of the actual censorship acts.

“One can not be too careful” is a long-term project, we plan to make a series of exhibitions in different cities and countries. One of the main elements of the project is exploration of manifestations of censorship and self-censorship in various local contexts. The first exhibition of the series took place in Brighton (UK) in the beginning of June 2017, the second could be seen at CECH gallery in Minsk (BY) in October 2017.

The curators of the project are art group {motherland} (RU), Ania PsH (UK), Raddy Kalashnikowsky (CZ) and Aliaxey Talstou (BY).