In 2007 Mark Wallinger reconstructed a camp that had been erected to protest against the Iraque War six years beforehand. In June 2001, Brian Haw started with just one chair, a poster and a megaphone. The camp crews into an installation of over 600 placards, images and graffiti against the War in Afghansitan, the sanctions against Iraq, and the threatened attack on that country.
In the summer of 2003, there was a hearing whereit was argued that long term protests in the immediate vicinity of parliament represented a security risk, and for this reason it was proposed to ban them. Such a ban on unpermitted protests within a security radius of one kilometer was finally pushed through by the government after years of debate in the framework of the "Serious Organized Crime and Police Act".
The law went into effect on August 1, 2005. On the basis of this law, the police dismantled Haw´s camp and confiscated the posters, artworks, and furniture. But in January 2007, however, Brian Haws´large protest camp could be seen again: now not in front of the British Parliament, but in the prestigious museum Tate Britain. Mark Wallingers installation took on political explosiveness no only due to the museum´s claim that the line demarcating the one kilometer security zone ran exactly through the hall. Wallinger marked out this line on the floor and placed the camp directly on it. The press then speculated whether the state would disrupt the art action, if the police would intrude into the museum to remove the half of the installation within the security zone. But there was not such police action.
here you can watch a video documentation about Mark Wallingers installation at the Tate Britain:
about the exhibition "freedom of speech": http://www.kunstverein.de
an interview with curator Florian Waldvogel: vimeo.com/17920888
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