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Decolonising The Image

Decolonising The Image

How is decolonisation (process by which colonies and the colonizing country ‘divorce’) represented through images, in popular culture, film, photography and art? Where are the images of decolonisation? What is the legacy of those images in our culture? What does it mean to ‘decolonise’ an image? These are some of the questions that the wonderful project ‘Shared History/Decolonising the Image’ was seeking to raise and put forward for discussion. International and interdisciplinary in its scope, it consisted of four parts; an academic conference, a film programme, an art exhibition and a video lounge, presented in four different venues from W139, Arti and Maison Descartes to the University of Amsterdam from 6 May to 4 June 2006. We are delighted that the conference organisers Sophie Berrebi and Julia Noordegraaf, responded so enthusiastically to our request for a ‘revival’ of 6 highlight lectures from their programme, this time in the context of World of Nearness and specifically adressing young artists at the Rietveld Academie. This selection of 6 lectures from the conference Shared History / Decolonising the Image takes a look at the images (photographs, documentaries, films) that have shaped the general imagination of decolonisation, in particular in Algeria and France and in Indonesia and the Netherlands. While there are many publications that investigate the role of literature in these processes, little is known about the role of images. Various topics can be addressed: What is the specific role of the image? Who ‘speaks’ through it? How can images be (re)appropriated? What do we talk about when we say ‘images or representations of decolonisation’?

Decolonising the Image and its corresponding seminar will be moderated by Delphine Bedel, who together with Sophie Berrebi curated the Shared History / Decolonising the Image exhibition. Delphine Bedel is an artist and curator who also teaches at the Rietveld Academie. 

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