Whistleblowers & Vigilantes. Figures of Digital Resistance

09. April 2016 - 14. August 2016 Dortmunder U, Level 3

"It has been a long time since an exhibition shocked and confused me. In fact, I cannot even remember when it last happened. Yet the exhibition Whistleblowers & Vigilanters has managed to do just that. (...) Whistleblowers & Vigilanters differs from the flood of other art exhibitions themed around surveillance and control by reflecting on the legitimacy of online autonomous political action in general. Indirectly this means it also reflects upon the space of life that exists beyond all control. Rather than create another horror show around the future of privacy and freedom, with Whistleblower & Vigilanten we are presented with the persistence of fringe cultures and of free thinkers. For me this makes this an exhibition of hope." (Josephine Bosma, Furtherfield, 6 July 2016)


"Whistleblowers & Vigilantes" will be on view at the Kunsthal Charlottenborg in Copenhagen from 18 June - 13 August 2017. Join us for the opening on 17 June 2017!


As early as 1996 artists and net activists such as the Electronic Disturbance Theater and etoy began using “electronic civil disobedience” tactics to attract the public’s attention to the rampant commercialisation of the Internet. Since this time, the radical strand of online activism called ‘internet vigilantism’ or simply ‘digilantism’ has been thriving.

The exhibition “Whistleblowers and Vigilantes. Figures of Digital Resistance” asks what links hacktivists, whistleblowers and (Internet) vigilantes. What is the legal understanding of these different actors? Do they share certain conceptions? Who speaks and acts for whom and in the name of which (higher) right?

Among other issues the exhibition will examine the differing legal conceptions and strategies of self-legitimisation put forth by activists, whistleblowers, hackers, online activists and artists to justify their work.

Curated by Inke Arns and Jens Kabisch

Admission 5 € / 2,50 € reduced

Funders and Partners

Funded by the Arts Foundation | Kunststiftung NRW

Supported by Pro Helvetia, Swiss Cultural Foundation

Main Funders of HMKV
Dortmunder U – Centre for Art and Creativity
Cultural Office of the City of Dortmund
Ministry for Family, Children, Youth, Culture and Sport of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia

Cultural Partner

Media Partners

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