13. Occupy Gezi Solidarity Demonstrations at the Venice Biennale by Venice Biennale Attendees, 2013
Protests erupted in central Istanbul after Turkish authorities violently herded out and arrested thousand of peaceful protesters from a small park. After citizens around the globe witnessed the event through pictures and other various social media platforms, a number of occupations (reminiscent of that of Occupy Wall Street) cropped up internationally, in solidarity with those who set up camp in Gezi Park. This particular event is not strictly considered a political artwork, but it would be a shame to exclude something as phenomenal as political agency at a place like the hallowed Venice Biennale. During the Biennale, art world elite gather to examine the international sphere of art, and it sometimes seems that amidst this pristine bubble of aesthetic contemplation is a complete lack of awareness of current events. Solidarity demonstrations such as these stand as reminder that the art-goers and aesthetes still have an undeniable social and political consciousness.