In Duty Free Art, filmmaker and writer Hito Steyerl wonders how we can appreciate, or even make art in the present age. What can we do when arms manufacturers sponsor museums and some of the world's most valuable artworks are used as a fictional currency in a global futures market that has nothing to do with the works themselves? Can we distinguish between creativity and the digital white noise that bombards our everyday lives? Exploring artifacts as diverse as video games, Wikileaks files, the proliferation of spam, and political actions, she exposes the paradoxes within globalization, political economies, visual culture, and the status of art production.
Hito Steyerl is one of the leading artists working in video today. Her work explores the divisions between art philosophy and politics. She has had solo exhibitions at, amongst others, MOCA, Los Angeles; Reina Sofia, Madrid; ICA, London and has participated in the Venice Biennale, Shanghai Biennale, documenta and Manifesta. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Tate Modern. She is the author of The Wretched of the Screen and writes in numerous periodicals. She is currently a professor of new media art at the Berlin University of the Arts.