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The Art21 Translation Project: Bringing the Words of Contemporary Artists to Global Audiences

Production still from the "Exclusive" episode, "El Anatsui: Languages & Symbols," with Italian subtitles provided by Art21 Translation Team member, Isabella Martini.

Production still from the Exclusive episode, El Anatsui: Languages & Symbols, with Italian subtitles provided by Art21 Translation Team member, Isabella Martini.

“I wish that I spoke more languages because I think each language is a window completely.” —El Anatsui

Art21 is committed to bringing the works and words of contemporary artists to as large of a global audience as possible. To help us increase access to the ideas presented in our videos beyond English-speaking audiences, we launched the Art21 Translation Project in early January. As you can see from the following translations of the above quote, the project is already off to a fast start.

“Me gustaría hablar más idiomas porque creo que cada idioma es una ventana completa.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Spanish by Art21 Translation team members Veronica Bruzon Cid and Amy Vazquez

“Saya berangan saya bisa bicara dalam banyak bahasa karena menurut saya masing-masing bahasa adalah jendela yang seutuhnya.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Indonesian by Art21 Translation team member Dwi Rianto

“Magari parlassi più lingue perché credo che ogni lingua sia una finestra a sé.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Italian by Art21 Translation team member Isabella Martini

“Quem me dera falar mais línguas porque acho que nada língua é uma janela.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Portuguese by Art21 Translation team member Sara Branco

“Keşke daha fazla dil konuşuyor olsaydım, çünkü ben her dilin ayrı bir pencere olduğuna inanıyorum.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Turkish by Art21 Translation team member adeptgunes

“Îmi doresc să pot vorbi mai multe limbi, deoarece cred că fiecare limbă este o fereastră.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Romanian by Art21 Translation team member Laura Oprea

“Ich wünschte, ich spräche mehr Sprachen, denn ich glaube, dass jede Sprache ein ganzes Fenster ist.”
—El Anatsui, translated into German by Art21 Translation team member Barbara Mauchle

“הייתי רוצה לדבר יותר שפות מפני שלדעתי כל שפה היא חלון”
—El Anatsui, translated into Hebrew by Art21 Translation team member elaiamara1

“Μακάρι να μιλούσα περισσότερες γλώσσες, επειδή πιστεύω ότι κάθε γλώσσα είναι ένα παράθυρο.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Greek by Art21 Translation team member Mary Keramida

“Es vēlos kaut runātu vairāk valodās, jo uzskatu, ka katra valoda ir pilnībā kā logs.”
—El Anatsui, translated into Latvian by Art21 Translation team member Kristaps Kadiķis

Art21 partnered with non-profit Amara to help achieve our vision of global access. The Art21 Translation Project brings together a community of volunteers to help transcribe and translate Art21 videos, in turn helping to inspire a more creative world through the works and words of contemporary artists. Through the efforts of the translation community, the words of artists become more accessible to audiences across languages. A set of English subtitles also helps make videos accessible to viewers who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Within the first two weeks of the project’s launch, the translation community—currently 140 members strong—has contributed almost 100 sets of subtitles in over 10 different languages. All contributors will soon be acknowledged on video pages across YouTube and

We invite all members of the Art21 Blog community to join the Art21 Translation team on Amara and help Art21 bring the voices of 100 artists to global audiences.

See below for the full “El Anatsui: Languages & Symbols” video with all sets of translated subtitles contributed by our translation community.

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