Rom Thomas Acton

    From the fall of the Berlin Wall to the first Roma Pavilion at the Venice Biennale – from the world of Agnes Daroczi to the world of Daniel Baker

    Thomas Acton

    Where did the “new Romani artists” come from? And why now?

    When I first met the distinguished English Romani artist Delaine LeBas in the 1990s, she told me she felt guilty because she had not done enough for her own people. I always replied that the Romani people needed real artists and professionals in all fields; there were already professional Gypsies whose main specialisation was helping their own people. Since 2006 the “new Romani art” has moved centre stage in European Roma politics.  What can this art do for the people? And in what sense, if any, does the new Romani art tell us about contemporary Gypsy/Roma/Traveller experience?    I will suggest it can only do so if that is not actually its purpose.

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