An audience looking at the projection of a text on a bright blue background “He didn’t just well up with tears, Webster later told me. He broke down sobbing…”

Tony CokesDe Balie

Tony Cokes in De Balie, photo Viktoryia Kharytonava
Tony CokesDe Balie22 Dec. 2022 8 Jan. 2023

De Balie presents a selection of video works by Tony Cokes, shown across different spaces of the debate centre and on the outdoor video wall on Leidseplein square in Amsterdam.

The exhibition Tony Cokes in De Balie (22 Dec. 2022 – 8 Jan. 2023) is a partner project of Hartwig Art Foundation.


Since the 1980s, Tony Cokes has developed a body of work that combines text, colour and sound into striking video essays that address topics such as popular culture, mass media, gentrification, structural racism, war and capitalism. His video works reappropriate quotes and texts that he displays on bright, monochrome backgrounds, often to an upbeat musical soundtrack. By dissociating text from images, Cokes offers a political commentary on the role of art and today’s society.

Tony Cokes (1956) is professor at the Department of Modern Culture and Media at Brown University (US). His work has been presented internationally at various venues and manifestations such as the MoMA & Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, MACBA in Barcelona, Centre George Pompidou in Paris, REDCAT in Los Angeles, the 10th Berlin Biennale, the International Film Festival Rotterdam, Sonic Acts in Amsterdam, BAK in Utrecht and Haus der Kunst & Kunstverein in München.