Indian Country has a much more intimate relationship with the Federal Bureau of Investigation than most of America. The 1885 Seven Major Crimes Act gave the FBI jurisdiction over reservations when dealing with such major crimes as murder. In the 1960s and 1970s, the FBI also famously launched COINTELPRO, a covert program to undermine activist organizations that the government deemed threatening, particularly Native American rights organizations. Families, even loosely affiliated with activist organizations, were followed, monitored, and harassed.
Today the federal government conducts warrantless wiretapping under the Obama administration. The intrusive surveillance familiar to Indian Country is now experienced by all US citizens. Equally disturbing is the amount of information about ourselves that we freely give away to corporations via social networking.
This art show explores the personal experiences of artists who have been incarcerated, threatened, attacked, or spied upon by the FBI, but also artists who have worked with the FBI as prosecutors and who have been helped by the FBI in investigations. Artists explore the effect of these experiences on their personal lives. We also examine how, due to technological advances, surveillance has become utterly ubiquitous and even accepted in today's world. What does this lack of privacy mean to us individually and collectively? How does it change our behavior? And where ultimately will it lead us?
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