We are told we are in the age of ‘post-truth’. But when has the truth ever been simple? Does everyone agree what is just? Can more than one version of history exist? How do we come to believe any of these notions are stable?
The University of Warwick partnered with the Tate Modern’s exciting Tate Exchange programme to put on a week of events around the theme of The Production of Truth, Justice and History from 12th -17th June 2018. These installations and activities were also displayed in Coventry on Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th November 2018.
Artists and academics explored truth, justice and history not as fixed and absolute, but as concepts that are produced over time, by different groups and through struggle and challenge. Our programme used artistic engagement from film to embroidery, photography to performance, coupled with insights from researchers in history, sociology, literature and social theory, to challenge our ideas about what seem to be fundamental truths.
We welcomed schools, communities and art-lovers to help us explore these questions using perspectives from the nineteenth century into the twenty-first; from people fighting for justice for disappeared people, to understanding the lives of women in prison and using film animations to reconnect with identity and citizenship; from challenging what constitutes satire or censorship, to making space for feminist knowledge. How can art help us to understand what we can really agree on about truth, justice or history, and should we agree?