Tamiko Thiel
Shades of Absence
In these "pavilions of absence," images of contemporary artists whose works have been censored are reduced to gold silhouettes and placed in the midst of terms of transgression. Each erased silhouette stands for countless unknown or lesser known artists who face censorship or persecution with no public support.

The augmented reality artworks are placed on site via GPS coordinates and can be viewed in the displays of smartphones. When viewing the artwork on site, touching the display brings up this list of censored artists, including but not limited to the artists depicted.

[ View website with cases of censorship here ]

''Shades of Absence: Governing Bodies,'' Corcoran Gallery of ARt atrium, Washington DC
''Shades of Absence: Governing Bodies,'' banners in the Corcoran, Gallery 31, Washington DC
''Shades of Absence: Governing Bodies,'' U.S. Capitol Building, Washington DC
''Shades of Absence: Public Voids,'' Piazza San Marco, Venice
''Shades of Absence: Outside Inside,'' Venice Giardini
''Shades of Absence: Schlingensief Gilded,'' German Pavilion, Venice Giardini
''Shades of Absence: Public Voids,'' Brooklyn Bridge, NY
''Shades of Absence: Outside Inside,'' Manhattan Bridge, NY
''Shades of Absence: Public Voids,'' Convention Center, Los Angeles
''Shades of Absence: Outside Inside,'' UCLA Broad Art Center, Los Angeles
''Shades of Absence: Public Voids,'' Art Center South Campus, Los Angeles

There are four artworks in the series:

"Shades of Absence" has been shown at the following venues:

There are various shades of absence for censored works, with some artworks and artists becoming even more prominent due to censorship, and others – the vast majority – disappearing without a trace. At a time when well-known artworks are being destroyed and famous artists arrested, we need to be aware that most artists who are censored do not enjoy world-wide visibility and support.

One database exists already, although the bulk of cases it documents are from the 1990s:
The File Room was a project by Antoni Muntadas begun in 1990. The technology was updated only until roughly 1994- the first beginnings of web technology - and the search facilities are limited, but there are a large number of cases in its database. There is no funding for continued technical development, but visitors can add to the existing database through a web interface.