Poetic Justice

Poetic Justice:
On the Intersection of Art and Law in the Work of
Félix González-Torres

Thursday, February 11, 2016

de la Cruz Collection
23 NE 41st Street, Miami, FL 33137
(305) 576-6112

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Since the beginning, Félix González-Torres' art and activist work have received substantial academic and institutional attention. However, in the last few years, there has been a growing scholarly interest in González-Torres' art works and the ways in which they are informed by law and juridical structures. Through the intersection of conceptual art strategies and legal instruments, González-Torres' art works complicate and expand our understanding of what constitutes the art object, the ownership, exhibition and dissemination of art, and the
public's relationship to art and art institutions.

This symposium brings together scholars with backgrounds in law, art history and cultural history, as well as collectors and contemporary artists, in order to analyze the work of Félix González-Torres and its impact on the emerging field of art and law. This will be a unique opportunity for researchers, art historians, curators, artists, students and lawyers interested in art and law and the work of Félix González-Torres to meet and discuss their mutual interests.  The symposium is organized by Cornell Law School and the Art & Law Program and the de la Cruz Collection.

To register, please click HERE

PROGRAM

1:30 - 2:30 pm
Panel I: The Intersection of Art and Law in Félix González-Torres Work from the Collector's Perspective

This panel will provide an overview of González-Torres' work, both in the context of the history of art as well as within the gay rights movement, considered as both a legal and social/political movement.  Robert Hobbs will lead this discussion by presenting a brief history that helps to situate the significance of González-Torres' art.  In light of the unique features of González-Torres' work, what does it mean to collect his art? What are the unique challenges of exhibiting art of this particular kind? The panel will provide an opportunity to discuss the intersection of art and law in González-Torres' work from the distinctive perspective of both his most dedicated collectors and his close friends.

Moderator:
Robert Hobbs, The Rhoda Thalhimer Endowed Chair at the School of Arts, Virginia Commonwealth University


Panelists:
Jim Hodges, Artist
Ibett Yanez
, Director, de la Cruz Collection 
Rosa de la Cruz
Founder, de la Cruz Collection
Carlos de la Cruz
Founder, de la Cruz Collection

2:30 pm
Break for 15 minutes - refreshments and light fare


2:45 - 4:15 pm
Panel II: Property and Propriety in the Work of Félix González-Torres

What issues does González-Torres' work raise in the fields of property and intellectual property?  Complicating preconceived notions of private and public ownership and space, and even of thingness itself, how does González-Torres' work complicate distinctions between tangible and intangible property?

Moderator:
Eduardo M. Peñalver, AB '94,
The Allan R. Tessler Dean and Professor of Law, Cornell University Law School

Panelists:
Gregory S. Alexander
, A. Robert Noll Professor of Law, Cornell University Law School
Bill Brown, The Karla Scherer Distinguished Service Professor in American Culture,
University of Chicago

Noah Horowitz, Director Americas, Art Basel
Sonia K. Katyal, Professor of Law, UC Berkeley School of Law


4:15 pm
Break for 15 minutes - refreshments and light fare

4:30 - 6:00 pm
Panel III: The Contract as Language and Object of Art

How do legal instruments impact conceptual art such as González-Torres', and how does González-Torres' work engage language and the written agreement, e.g. through his use of certificates of authenticity?  How does González-Torres' use of certificates of authenticity critique and/or reinforce traditional and conventional understandings of the "art object"?

Moderator:
Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, JD '06,
Artist and Art Lawyer, The Art & Law Program

Panelists:
Alexander Alberro
, Virginia Bloedel Wright Professor of Art History and Department Chair, Barnard College
Martha Buskirk, Professor of Art History and Criticism, Montserrat College of Art
Joan Kee, Associate Professor of Art History, University of Michigan

6:00 - 7:00 pm
Reception

7:00 - 8:00 pm
Keynote Panel: Love, Negation and Recollection

González-Torres' work was influenced by prior art movements and it has also impacted how many contemporary artists engage the practice of art.  This panel will focus on how artists have engaged the work of González-Torres both conceptually and pragmatically in order to further their work, the conversation of contemporary art and the interpretation of González-Torres' work.

Moderator:
Sergio Muñoz Sarmiento, JD '06
, Artist and Art Lawyer, The Art & Law Program

Panelists:
Amada Cruz, The Sybil Harrington Director, Phoenix Art Museum
Jim Hodges, Artist
Robert Hobbs, The Rhoda Thalhimer Endowed Chair at the School of Arts, Virginia Commonwealth University
Noah Horowitz, Director Americas, Art Basel 

To view all moderator and panelist bios, please click HERE