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A More Perfect Union: American Artists and the Currents of our Time
Art in Embassies Democracy Collection

A More Perfect Union Opens at Xippas Gallery

The exhibition is open to the public from June 29 to July 22, 2023.

June 27, 2023

Art in Embassies Traveling Democracy Collection Exhibition in Geneva

Civil Rights activist and musician Joan Baez will be on hand for the Art in Embassies celebration of its 60th anniversary exhibition, A More Perfect Union: American Artists and the Currents of Our Time.

The traveling art exhibition is part of the office’s Democracy Collection initiative putting artists central to the defense of democracy. The initiative includes scores of artist visits at U.S. Embassies across the globe and a democracy-themed art contest for middle- and high-school students. To fuel art diplomacy for coming generations, the office will expand its art repository with pieces that align with the themes of democracy and raise funds for the storage, care, and shipping of art to posts around the globe.

“Artists are the world’s best ambassadors for the cause of freedom, because they survive on freedom,” said Megan Beyer, Director of the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations’ Office of Art in Embassies at the U.S. Department of State. “Art can make you feel what a diplomat can only try to make you understand.”

A More Perfect Union: American Artists and the Currents of Our Time, curated by Art in Embassies Chief Curator Camille Benton, President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities member Nora Halpern, and former Art in Embassies Director Ellen Susman, includes works by some of the most respected contemporary artists in the United States. Exhibition works focus on issues of equality, freedom, justice, and other founding principles of the United States. Among the artists are Tanya Aguiñiga, Doug Aitken, Paula Crown, Jenny Holzer, Wyatt Gallery, Jeffrey Gibson, Jay Lynn Gomez, Eric Gottesman, Tomashi Jackson, Titus Kaphar, Christine Sun Kim, Bruce Nauman, Yoko Ono, Alexis Rockman, Edward Ruscha, Will Ryman, Emily Shur, Xavier Tavera, Hank Willis Thomas, Marie Watt, Carrie Mae Weems, Susan Weil, Lawrence Weiner, Ambassador Chantale Wong, and Yu-Wen Wu.

Along with Joan Baez, exhibition opening events will feature Permanent Representative to the United Nations Human Rights Council, Ambassador Michèle Taylor; actor, comedian, writer, and former White House Art Adviser aid Kal Penn; and Alexis Rockman, whose paintings show a future world facing the consequences of climate change, including the Golden Gate Bridge. The exhibition opens at Xippas Gallery in the art district of Geneva and will be open to the public through July 22.

The Democracy Collection is made possible by its partners, The Boeing Company, the Ford Foundation, and the Doris Duke Foundation, as well as United Airlines, Microsoft, AT&T, Salamander Hotels and Resorts, and scores of individual philanthropists and collectors who have donated time, funds, and artworks to this effort.

The U.S. Department of State established the Office of Art in Embassies in 1963, adapting a program started ten years earlier at the Museum of Modern Art. The exhibitions and collections created by the office play a vital role in our nation’s public diplomacy. The works are carefully selected to reflect the pride and innovation of America’s cultural sector, and to make cross cultural connections in the regions and states in which they are displayed. Art in Embassies curates permanent and temporary exhibitions for over 200 U.S. embassies and official residences across the globe.

U.S. Mission Geneva Press Contact:  Wendy Lubetkin  GenevaPress  @  state.govArt in Embassies Press contact: Megan Pannone pannonem  @   state.govExhibition Location: Xippas GalleryRue des Sablons 6Rue du Vieux-Billard 7