Tate Modern Talk

Art and Inequality: An Open Discussion

Peter Kennard, ‘Maggie Regina’ 1983
Peter Kennard, Maggie Regina 1983. Tate. © Peter Kennard

Join a public conversation exploring artistic responses to inequality

Struggles for equality continue to engage with issues of class, race, gender, sexuality, and ability. This event explores the specific roles that art might play in tackling inequalities. How might artists document or make visible forms of inequality? What impact might their work have in shaping political and economic debates in these areas? How might artists and institutions work with communities and activists to reduce inequalities? And in what ways might art and its institutions perpetuate inequalities?

The evening is designed as an open discussion drawing on questions and contributions from the audience rather than formal presentations from the panellists. Chaired by the broadcaster Bidisha, the panel includes the cultural critic Bonnie Greer, academic Andrea Phillips (BALTIC Professor and Director of the BxNU research institute), and the artist Jacob V Joyce.​

If you cannot attend the event, but would like to submit a question for the panel to consider, please email Richard.Martin@tate.org.uk with the subject line ‘Art and Inequality’ by Friday 15 June.

This event has been developed by Tate in partnership with The Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity (AFSEE) based at the LSE’s International Inequality Institute. The AFSEE programme brings together people involved in activism and academia from around the world to find new and effective solutions to global inequalities.​

This event has been provided by Tate Gallery on behalf of Tate Enterprises LTD​​.


Bidisha is a British writer, film-maker and broadcaster for BBC TV and radio, Channel 4 news and Sky News and is a trustee of the Booker Prize Foundation, looking after the UK's most prestigious prizes for literature in English and in translation. She also does outreach work in UK prisons, refugee charities and detention centres and her fifth book, Asylum and Exile: Hidden Voices of London, is based on her outreach work. Bidisha is the chair of judges for the 2018 Forward Prizes for poetry and has just directed her first short film, An Impossible Poison, which premiered in Berlin in November 2017, received its London premier in March 2018 at the Royal Albert Hall and made the official selection of several international film festivals. As a poet, Bidisha has been published by Saqi Books, Seagull Books, English PEN, Wasafiri magazine and Young MWA magazine and been performed internationally.

Dr. Andrea Phillips is BALTIC Professor and Director of BxNU Research Institute, Northumbria University & BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. Andrea lectures and writes about the economic and social construction of public value within contemporary art, the manipulation of forms of participation and the potential of forms of political, architectural and social reorganization within artistic and curatorial culture. Recent publications include: ‘Social Dreaming: Learning about curating at Iniva and Santiniketan’ in (eds. Choi, Rosenthal, Watson), Practice International (London/Utrecht: Iniva/CASCO, 2018 forthcoming); ‘The Imperative for Self-attainment: From Cradle to Grave’ in (eds. Choi, van der Heide), Unlearning (Utrecht: CASCO, 2018 forthcoming); ‘Forgetting the Public’ in (ed.) Mick Wilson, Park Lek (London: Black Dog, 2018); ‘in conversation with Keller Easterling’ in (eds.) O’Neill, Steel, Wilson, How do Institutions Think? (Massachusetts: MIT, 2017); ‘Artistic research, publishing and capitalisation’ in (eds.) Kaila, Seppä, Slager, The Futures of Artistic Research (Helsinki: University of the Arts, 2017).

Bonnie Greer OBE is an American-British playwright, novelist, critic and broadcaster. She has appeared as a panellist on television programmes such as Newsnight Review and Question Time, and has served on the boards of several leading arts organisations, including the British Museum, the Royal Opera House and the London Film School. She is the Chancellor of Kingston University.

Jacob V Joyce is a multidisciplinary artist using art, music and creative interventions to amplify historical and nourish new queer/anti-colonial narratives. As well as practicing fine art, Joyce works as a freelance illustrator creating the art work for international human rights campaigns as well as comic books and zines addressing personal and global instances of systemic oppression. As a member of the sorryyoufeeluncomfortable collective and the front person for the band Screaming Toenail, Joyce’s work brings satirical and theatrical critiques to institutional and every day instances of marginalisation. Joyce has self-published a number of illustrated books addressing a variety of political issues and performs spoken word which combines electronic voice looping with poetic strategies of resistance.​

Tate Modern

Starr Cinema

London SE1 9TG
Plan your visit

Date & Time

20 June 2018 at 18.30–20.00

Supported by

The J Isaacs Charitable Trust

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