Sinners and Citizens

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The Smashing Times Sinners and Citizens State of the Art Gallery is a collection of artworks created by artists from across Ireland who are interested in using their artistic practice to promote human rights. The theme is State of the Art: The Nation State as both Violator and Protector of Human Rights, and was created for the Dublin Arts and Human Rights Festival 2021. The artworks are presented in venues across Dublin for the duration of the festival, but are also shown in a new way online, in the Sinners and Citizens gallery. This gallery lets the audience view artworks up close, and provides information on all of the artists involved, creating an accessible and engaging space for people across the world.

‘Sinners and Citizens’ is taken from a quote from Seamus Heaney:

“As writers and readers, as sinners and citizens, our realism and our aesthetic sense make us wary of crediting the positive note. The very gunfire braces us and the atrocious confers a worth upon the effort which it calls forth to confront it.”

This virtual exhibition features artworks created by artists who are taking part in State of the Art: The Nation State as both Violator and Protector of Human Rights, a project implemented by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and supported by the Arts Council. 

The project brings together fourteen diverse artists to engage in creative practice and research on national and international best practice examples of arts and human rights from across Europe, linked to sociological and anthropological standpoints and a study of ‘art as activism’ from the personal to the political. 

The artworks are inspired by the theme State of the Art: The Nation State as both Violator and Protector of Human Rights and by the UN Declaration of Human Rights, intersecting with equality, human rights and diversity and created under the framework of ‘Art as a Place of Performative Remembrance’ and ‘Art as Activism and Transformation’.