Mission Statement

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The Institute for Aesthetic Advocacy (IAA) is a Minneapolis-based art collective that uses interdisciplinary art practices, digital ethics, and rhetorical awareness to promote social criticism and cross-cultural dialogue. The IAA is committed to breaking down the digital divides that have made it difficult for people to determine what is true and who can be trusted.

The IAA’s mission is to re-imagine the gallery space as a site of post-digital social criticism and cross-cultural dialogue. Through innovative curatorial practices and gallery spaces, the IAA produces and promotes academically peer-reviewed “aesthetic education” exhibits that can also be curated to provide supplemental materials for social activism or legal action. The IAA is especially interested in using gallery spaces as a means of navigating scientific and technological controversies during a time of rampant institutional distrust.

Curatorial Initiatives and Aesthetic Innovations

The IAA has exhibited and peer-reviewed in various galleries and forums, including:

Algorithmic Racial Justice: “Digital Rights Are Civil Rights”

In partnership with ACLU MN, Stanford’s Race and Technology Fellows, Councilman Steve Fletcher, and the IDH, the IAA presented an international arts exhibition (with Little Earth) to the Minneapolis and international arts communities. This exhibition aimed to promote awareness of algorithmic bias and the ways in which it can perpetuate racial injustice.

Cross-Cultural Public Health Dialogue

The IAA has exhibited in various galleries and forums that promote cross-cultural public health dialogue, including the CICA Museum, Rhetorical Society of America (2018 and 2020), Rhetoric of Health and Medicine Symposium; Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine, NE Sculpture| Gallery, Zverver Center of Contemporary Art, and Wheaton College. One of their juried exhibits, “Contaminated 1,” aimed to raise awareness about environmental contamination and its impact on public health.

Advocacy through Empowerment

The IAA believes in advocacy through empowerment. They aim to initiate opportunities for communities and their partners to act together, sharing tools and methods that have been proven to address technological division and disenfranchisement. By working with their partners, the IAA hopes to achieve meaningful change through science, research, public awareness, and art.

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