Curated by Delphine Bedel and Daria Tuminas

Between 6 and 8 May 2022,  FOTODOK organizes the conference (IN)VISIBILITIES, Gender and Photography in the Netherlands. This is the conference’s second edition, following up from The Female Perspective in Documentary Photography, which took place at The Cobra Museum Modern Art, Amstelveen in 2019 on the occasion of the exhibition Kati Horna: Compassion and Engagement. The event highlighted the practices of various international photographers. For this second edition, we invite leading actors working in the Netherlands—artists, curators, activists and scholars—to expand upon the much needed conversations about gender, representation, and inclusivity within the photographic field.

The program looks into different forms of research, activism, and artistic and photographic practices taking place in the Dutch context. A variety of international projects also offer frameworks of experiences that could be instrumental for the local scene. The aim of the conference is to bring together the Netherlands-based community and to develop collective tools for empowerment and action.

Another goal of the conference is to question the idea of gender and its representation today from an intersectional and feminist perspective. We recognize the plurality of experiences of womanhood—including those related to race, class, sexual orientation, age, and ability—as well as the plurality of female, trans, queer, and non-binary voices. Throughout the conference, we will ask: what kind of stories are being told through photographic projects that broaden the vision, understanding, and representation of gender? What are and what could be the decolonial gender politics of Dutch artistic and photographic institutions? How can we research the scene and bring about necessary change?

The main program of the conference unfolds online on 6–7 May. It includes sonic meditations, online professional speed-dating, keynotes, panel discussions, two workshops on representation by Foundation Engagement Arts NL, and other events. On 8 May, there will be a physical workshop aimed at the conversation about Ukraine. Follow more updates at FOTODOK’s website and Instagram.

The title, (IN)VISIBILITIES, refers to the multiple standpoints artists and thinkers use in their practices. While sometimes it is possible to declare one’s position openly or celebrate the characters of photographic stories by making them seen in a literal sense, in other circumstances anonymity is the necessary condition for protecting those who are speaking up. The Mexican-Hungarian photographer Kati Horna, a refugee of war, insisted on calling herself an “invisibilist.” Invisibilism is as an attitude toward life that enabled her to survive and develop her artistic practice. The conference addresses strategies of representation and inclusivity, fluctuating between many forms of “(in)visibilities.”

Read the full program in PDF here.

Dates: 6–8 May 2022
Language: English
Location: Online (with a few satellite events taking place in physical spaces)
Curators: Delphine Bedel and Daria Tuminas
Visual identity: Pleun Gremmen
Sonic meditations: Femke Dekker
Production: Delphine Bedel, Daria Tuminas, Olga Verbeek, and production team of FOTODOK
With the support of: the City of Utrecht and Mondriaan Fonds