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Tania Bruguera

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Filmed on Wednesday, April 29, 2019, at the Neuberger Museum of Art

Cuban-born installation and performance artist Tania Bruguera discusses her work, behavior art, immigration, and the relationship among art, politics, and life.

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Bruguera was the first recipient of the Neuberger Museum’s Roy R. Neuberger Exhibition Prize awarded to an innovative, international artist for an early career survey and catalogue.

For over 25 years, she has created socially-engaged performances and installations that examine the nature of political power structures and their effect on the lives of its constituency. Her research focuses on ways in which art can be applied to everyday political life; on the transformation of social affect into political effectiveness. Her long-term projects are intensive interventions on the institutional structure of collective memory, education and politics. Her works often expose the social effects of political forces and present global issues of power, migration, censorship and repression through participatory works that turn “viewers” into “citizens.”

By creating proposals and aesthetic models for others to use and adapt, Bruguera defines herself as an initiator rather than an author, and often collaborates with multiple institutions as well as many individuals so that the full realization of her artwork occurs when others adopt and perpetuate it.

Awarded an Honoris Causa by The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, selected one of the 100 Leading Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine, shortlisted for the #Index100 Freedom of Expression Award, a Herb Alpert Award winner, a Guggenheim, Radcliffe and Yale World Fellow, a Robert Rauschenberg Award Recipient, and the first artist-in-residence in the New York City Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs.

She participated in the Documenta 11 exhibition and also established the Arte de Conducta (Behavior Art) program at Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana. Her work has been shown in the 2015 Venice Biennale, at Tate Modern, London, Guggenheim and MoMA, New York, among others.

Bruguera has recently opened the Hannah Arendt International Institute for Artivism, in Havana – a school, exhibition space and think thank for activist artists and Cubans.


April 29, 2019

List of speakers


  • Helaine Posner, Chief Curator, Neuberger Museum of Art


  • Tania Bruguera, Artist