Sam Durant Revisits the “Scaffold” Controversy Three Years Later

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The artist discusses the controversial incident three years ago in a new essay that explores the conversations prompted with the Walker Art Center.

A few weeks ago, artist Sam Durant released a long essay about his work, "Scaffold," which reflects on the project that dominated art world headlines. Originally commissioned for documenta (13) — the influential quinquennial exhibition in Kassel, Germany — in 2012, it wasn't until "Scaffold" was installed in the Walker Art Center's sculpture park in downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota, that it was met with protests by the local Dakota community.

That event was a lightning rod for a national conversation about appropriation, racism, and the role of artists, museums, curators, and others in those conversation. I invited Durant to join me on the podcast to discuss the reason he wrote this so many years after the fact and what he thinks the lessons are.

The music featured in this episode is the track “California Life” by Radiochaser.

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Sam Durant Revisits the “Scaffold” Controversy Three Years Later
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