London Bridge: Not Falling Down

One of the longest-running themes in art, the notion of diaspora reflects the human impulses to move, reshape, adapt, and make something new. This is an idea that attracts artists, many of whom find the internet, in its ability to facilitate communication between geographically distant cultures, the best new site for creation. And that attracts curators. Cue Breda Beban, a London-based Serb interested in contemporary notions of subjectivity and emotion that occur on the margins of big stories about geography, politics, and love. Produced by Index Arts, Beban's Imagine Art After project brings together seven artists who left home and now live in London, and seven who remained in the country of their birth. Each pair of artists is currently engaged in a dialogue, hosted on the talkboards of London's Guardian Unlimited newspaper, which runs through December 11. Ideas and projects that come out of these public talks will be produced during 2006 and exhibited in London in 2007. By creating person-to-person encounters that explore issues of time, place, and race, Imagine Art After 'expands on the notion that we are all works in progress,' bridging the gap between here and there, new and old, (s)he and me. - Peggy MacKinnon