The Art of Confined Spaces

Jonathan Guyer in The American Prospect:

The smallest works spoke volumes at “Theater of Operations,” MoMA PS1’s monumental art exhibition on the U.S. invasions of Iraq, which closed last month. In the immense Queens satellite of the name-brand New York institution, the comparatively miniature works of Iraqi artists offered a visual diary of life under siege. Glass cases of dafatir (notebooks, in Arabic) were spread around the exhibition halls. Produced by several artists, notably Dia Azzawi and Kareem Risan, some of the books were burnt or ripped; others were printed with Arabic calligraphy or capped with forms figurative or abstract; some expanded while others were painted shut, or were adorned with found objects—like barbed wire.

I keep returning to these dafatir as I wonder what artists across the globe will create tomorrow from the discomfort of their own homes.

More here.