Banu Cennetoglu’s powerful work The List appeared in Liverpool in July as part of the city’s biennial (until 28 October). The piece features the names of the refugees, asylum seekers and migrants who have died “within or on the borders of Europe since 1993”, according to the anti-racism organisation United for Intercultural Action. It was first used in an art project by Cennetoglu in Amsterdam in 2007, and has been shown in grimly updated form in cities as far-flung as Athens, Sofia, Istanbul and Los Angeles. In its Liverpool incarnation, The List contains 34,361 names.
Twice, however, the 280m-long hoardings have been attacked, with the posters containing the list ripped down. Cennetoglu decided to leave the work in tatters “as a manifestation and reminder of this systematic violence exercised against people”.
The shredded, graffitied posters in Liverpool add to the potency of Cennetoglu’s gesture: they are a bleak symbol of worsening attitudes to migrant people, of which the detention of children on the US-Mexican border by President Donald Trump’s administration is but the most infamous development.
Read the full article by Ben Luke on The Art Newspaper.