CINDY SISSOKHO with FABIAN VILLEGAS

HOW TO ARTICULATE
(A) COLLECTIVE GAZE(S)





This contribution proposes two collective discussions, on Wednesdays 24 and 31 March, that will encourage a critical reading of photography today for the shaping of a future way of seeing, understanding and interpreting photography.

Shifting away from a predominant photographer’s agency, we will lean our attention towards the receiving end of the medium: the subjects and, most importantly, the viewers.

Drawing inevitable connections between contemporary photography practices and political agendas, we will be reflecting, in two workshop sessions, on what the concept of citizenship means in relation to spectatorship, gaze and perceptions, translating the idea of photography as an act of emotional and political responsibility.

The two workshops will be preceded by sharing a text and other resources that participants will have access to, for consultation beforehand.

Participants are warmly encouraged to contribute by bringing points of conversations, reflections and, fundamentally, critical questions, that will be activated during the session. In addition to the workshops, interested participants are invited to contribute to a collective text which will be published on untitled’s website and later on included in the publication of  IF A TREE FALLS IN A FOREST, following from the project’s exhibition in Arles Photography Festival, France in 2022.

The deadline for registering is March 15, 2021. We will share the workshop materials one week before each session. Both sessions will be recorded and shared on our website. Please feel free to ask us any questions.




24.03. WORKSHOP

VISUAL CITIZENSHIP AND EMOTIONAL RESPONSIBILITY
— With CINDY SISSOKHO

© Cindy Sissokho. Books covers of Catalog of 12th edition of the bamako encounters (2019, Listening to images by Tina Campt (2017),
The civil Imagination: a political ontology of photography by Ariella Azoulay (2012).


Photography has embedded itself as a process of humanising and dehumanising, and plays a fundamental role in shaping visual cultures and systems of knowledge from ethnography, identification photography, and photojournalism. Drawing from the work of photography scholar Ariella Aïsha Azoulay, this session will explore contested ideas of citizenship and responsibility in relation to the act of spectatorship through photography.

The session will also discuss and debate the temporality of images: their interpretation through times, contexts and subjectivities, as well as their agency in the future, from the moment they are taken. In relation to contemporary ideas, we will collectively interrogate the future of images. The role of the archive has been crucial in the articulation of this theme, as a place for memory and the radical reclaiming of narratives and stories through imagination exercises. We will also question what new meanings and visual languages we wish to produce, see and archive for the future; what modes of image production we wish to carve for future histories and narratives from our present.







31.03.2021 WORKSHOP

FICTIONALIZE THE NARRATIVE:
DISMANTLING COLONIAL SPACES OF REPRESENTATION
— With FABIAN VILLEGAS


© Bocafloja, Bravado Magenta Documentary.

From the field of the image, every event is a narrative, an ideologically constructed narrative in a space of representation. The central question of this session is what role the privilege of the Western-centered gaze has played in constructing a colonial narrative of space, and the body of indigenous peoples in the experience of the Global South. How the colonial representation of racialized bodies has essentialized the narrative of disaster, the narrative of calamity and the humanitarian crisis as something naturally insurmountable. What are the contemporary ideological guidelines that continue to feed a narrative of Latin America and the Caribbean, and many spaces in the Global South, through the interdependence between the ethnographic image, the tourist postcard, and the image of the humanitarian crisis? Using as a reference some visuals of docu-fiction, from the field of photography and cinema we will analyze the aesthetic, narrative and imaginary disputes that have allowed us to impose new trans-modernities, radical imaginations of the future, new conceptualizations about corpo-reality, which have made possible a break with the spaces of colonial representation.









BIO CINDY SISSOKHO


Cindy Sissokho (b. Montreuil/France) is a cultural producer, curator and writer with a specific interest in intellectual, political and artistic aspects of decoloniality within the arts, and culture. Her work is nurtured by the urgency to broadening and disseminating epistemologies and new cultural production from the Global South. Her curatorial work is a practice of disobedience in contrary to hegemonic discourses and neoliberal institutional politics by implementing disorder. She does so by working through new alternative and collaborative practices, accessible writing for all and everyday pedagogical tools and exchanges, among others. She currently works as a Curator and Special Projects Producer at the New Art Exchange in Nottingham (UK).




BIO FABIAN VILLEGAS


Fabian Villegas is a writer, journalist, spoken word artist, scholar, and researcher in South epistemologies, decolonial thoughts, and racial studies. Since 2007 to date, Fabian Villegas has been invited to give multiple conferences, seminars, lectures, and workshops in various universities and academic centers, renowned art biennials, and community cultural centers across the globe (México, Dominican Republic, France, Spain, Puerto Rico, Brasil, Uruguay, Argentina, Guatemala, Dubai, Costa Rica, U.S, Venezuela, Belice). He is also the co-founder of Contranarrativas, a collaborative project that seeks to create horizontal knowledge production spaces to stimulate the visibility, dissemination, and production of epistemologies, decolonial narratives, and peripheral aesthetics of the Global South. Born in Mexico City, Villegas currently resides in the Dominican Republic.




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