Negative Liberty / Positive Liberty

Friday, Apr 16, 2021 at 1:00pm

The Invisible Dog Art Center
51 Bergen Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

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Negative Liberty / Positive Liberty is an artistic distillation of Berlin’s lecture, in which he points out that when concepts of liberty are used rhetorically to control and repress individuals in the name of liberty itself, it will eventually, and inevitably, lead to violent conflict.

In addition to Berlin’s lecture, Negative Liberty/Positive Liberty is informed in part by Anthony Barboza’s 1966 photograph, Pensacola, FL. In the photograph is an image of a broken neon sign which once read “LIBERTY.” The E is clearly broken and the R is hanging at an angle. But what if the sign isn’t broken. What if it was never completed. 

Inspired by recent events - events that were fueled by an artificial rhetoric that eventually, and inevitably, become participatory, real and violent - a single viewer is offered an experience. In less than ten-minutes, it is delivered to them in artificial fashion. What follows is an invitation to participate; to lend the actual to the artificial, thus making the experience real and complete. All of this is done in the name of exercising one’s Liberty…but whose?

Conceived & Directed by Christopher McElroen

In collaboration with

Performers Sarah Ellen Stephens and Olivia Gilliatt

Scenographer Troy Hourie

Video Designer Adam J Thompson

Sound Designer Andy Evan Cohen

Lighting Designer Lucrecia Briceno

Production Manager Neal Wilkinson

Installation build by Silovsky Studios


Suggested donation $5


Walk ups will be accommodated in between reserved time slots.

The Negative Liberty / Positive Liberty experience is one person at a time, and lasts approximately 8 minutes.

This event listing provided for the Brooklyn community events calendar. Community events are not associated with or sponsored by AARP, but may be of interest to you. If you have an event to share, let us know!

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