About the project
2012 - 2018
Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Jonas Staal’s New World Summit is an artistic and political organization that creates ‘parliaments’ for stateless and blacklisted political groups that are banned from democracy. These parliaments take the form of large architectural constructions in theatres, art and public spaces.
The focus of the New World Summit has been on the War on Terror and the use of blacklists that impose travel bans, retrieve passports and freeze bank accounts of organisations considered a threat to democracy. This massive and unaccountable global security apparatus has created the conditions and legitimation for new “terrorist” threats to emerge and pose a grave danger to civil liberties at large.
New World Summit has created its parliaments in Berlin DE; Leiden NL; Kochi IN; Brussels BE and is preparing the fifth summit in Rojava, northern-Syria, in October 2015. Since 2012 we facilitated thirty different stateless groups, from the Azawadian independence movement in Northern Mali; the Kurdish struggle reaching across Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria and the unrecognised governments of Somaliland and West-Papua.
New World Summit believes that democracy as an emancipatory practice is limitless by definition in its capacity to create spaces of difference, conflict and confrontation. The question of the right to representation is exactly where the spheres of art and politics meet. We believe the visual literacy of art, its morphology – its genealogy of form – makes it possible to per-form a different practice of democracy. The spaces where we assemble, the ‘sociography’ proposed by our parliaments, and the visual vocabulary through which we aim to represent the many worlds that underlie our existing perception of the world map, is where the New World Summit practises its ideals of a ‘New Worldism’.
About the artist
Jonas Staal is a visual artist whose work deals with the relation between art, democracy, and propaganda. He is the founder of the artistic and political organization New World Summit (2012–ongoing). Together with Florian Malzacher he co-directs the training camp Training for the Future (2018-ongoing), and with human rights lawyer Jan Fermon he initiated the collective action lawsuit Collectivize Facebook (2020-ongoing). With writer and lawyer Radha D’Souza he founded the Court for Intergenerational Climate Crimes (2021-ongoing) and with Laure Prouvost he is co-administrator of the Obscure Union.
Exhibition-projects include Museum as Parliament (with the Democratic Self-Administration of Rojava, Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, 2018-ongoing), We Demand a Million More Years (Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin, 2022) and Extinction Wars (with Radha D'Souza, Gwangju Museum of Art, 2023). His projects have been exhibited widely at venues such as the V&A in London, Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, M_HKA in Antwerp, Moderna Museet in Stockholm, Centre Pompidou-Metz and the Nam June Paik Art Center in Seoul, as well as the 7th Berlin Biennale, the 31st São Paulo Biennale and the 12th Taipei Biennale.