“Silence” by Democracia

Biennale Warszawa in collaboration with a/political

In the context of the current Presidential elections, Democracia intervenes in the public space of Warsaw with an image of a policeman asking the passersby to remain silent. In contrast to loud election slogans designed to foster a belief in the existing political system, the work is a stark reminder of authoritarian backtracking of civil and human rights already in progress.

The gesture, popularised in the 1950s in Poland by Wojciech Fangor’s poster (Strzeż tajemnicy państwowej), and globally by a photograph of a nurse silencing the visitors of Argentinian hospitals in the 1950s(Francisco Pérez, Silencio hospitalario), became a global symbol of institutionalized power that is currently exercised in a direct and intrusive way by the governments across the world.

Silence by Democracia appears on three LED screens in the Świętokrzyska metro underpass and throughout the city in the run-up to, and beyond, the second round of Presidential elections on the 12 of July. Democracia’s work is also available as an open source on the Biennale Warszawa website.

Social media handles: @colectivodemocracia @apoliticalorg @biennalewarszawa #cisza #silencio

Silencio has been presented in the course of 2020 on the streets of Houston, Santiago de Chile and most recently London to protest against authoritarian tendencies progressing globally.

Democracia is an art collective addressing government-sanctioned violence and the injustices of capitalism. They themselves were threatened with a prison sentence for their series WE PROTECT YOU FROM YOURSELVES, 2013. Through their interventions, Democracia points at violation of civil and human rights under the guise of seemingly democratic governance and explores the politics of policing. www.democracia.com.es

a/political explores radical knowledge through the principle of cultural terror, platforming voices that undermine the dominant narratives of our time. The collective collaborates with artists and agitators to produce projects previously thought unrealisable due to their subject matter, scale and complexity. www.a-political.org


Interviews with Democracia are available at request. Please register interest with Sylwia Serafinowicz, Curator, a/political:

Contact for the media (Biennale Warszawa):