Sandra Vitaljic, from series “Infertile Grounds - Stubica” (2009-2012)


Fast Forward: Women in Photography – Conference 4

16-17 November 2023

Nikola Tesla Technical Museum, Zagreb, Croatia

We are happy to announce that the conference, which originally was planned to take place in Tbilisi (Georgia), will happen in Zagreb (Croatia) at Nikola Tesla Technical Museum in partnership with the Institute of Art History and Art Pavilion.

The other partners for the 4th edition of Fast Forward conference are Tbilisi Photo Festival, University for the Creative Arts (UCA) and London College of Communication (LCC) at University of the Arts London (UAL). This international conference will be aligned with an exhibition at Art Pavilion, curated by Sandra Križić Roban, that explores the histories of the practices of female photographers in the region. The conference is supported by University for the Creative Arts. 

The theme for the 4th conference, to be held in Zagreb, Croatia and co convened by Professor Anna Fox (UCA) and Maria Kapajeva (UCA, EKA), Professor Val Williams (LCC/UAL), Nestan Nijaradze (Tbilisi Photo Festival) and Dr. Sandra Križić Roban (Institute of Art History) is “Women, Photography, Conflict”. The conference will explore the ways that women photographers have worked in countries affected by conflict and will generate new knowledge within this under researched area.

As the violation of women’s rights is one of the prominent aspects dominating conflict zones, this theme resonates with many realities encountered by women across the region, including South Causasian and Balkan countries. Over the years women photographers have been active in documenting violations of human rights, have advocated for women and initiated real changes in conflict or post conflict territories. Yet, within the contemporary historiography of photography, their contributions are frequently omitted. Discussion of conflict photography almost always revolves around high action war photography and is heavily dominated by a traditional male perspective.

The 4th conference will explore various questions including

>> How do women photographers (re)shape our understanding of conflict?

>> To what extent does gender influence photography practice which deals with conflict and its aftermath?

>> How can we adjust photographic history, to encompass non-Western work by women photographers?

>> In which ways have women’s photographic documentation of human rights violations contributed to social justice?

The conveners are particularly interested in bringing together, and giving voice to, photography professionals, photographers, scholars, curators and editors from the wider region, including the countries of South Caucasus, Balkan and South Europe, Ukraine and other regions.


The full programme with the bios and the abstracts can be viewed and downloaded as PDF here.


November 16th

10:00 – 10:30 Welcomes by Sandra Križić Roban, Nestan Nijaradze and Anna Fox

10:30 – 11:30 Keynote by Jananne Al-Ani

Theme One: Reassess

11:30 – 12:00 Kateryna Radchenko “The history of recovering after and during the conflict. Photography as a method of reflection and rehabilitation”

12:00 – 12:30 Una Popović “Experience in the Crowd: Goranka Matić photography”

12:30 – 13:00 Nina Berman “Dressed Up, Stripped Down: Media Depictions of Conflict Rape”

13:00 – 13:30 Leonida Kovač “The Photographic Intersections”

Theme Two: Reveal

14:30 – 15:00 Chantal Edie Ntube “Gender-based violence during civil wars. How do women photographers reshape our understanding of conflict?”

15:00 – 15:30 Melanie Friend “Behind the battlefields”  

15:30 – 15:50 Dana Ariel “Punctuated Land: Conflict in Landscape and Language”

15:50 – 16:10 Leslie Hakim-Dowek “Erasures in an Imagined Geography”

16:10 – 16:30 Judy Rabinowitz Price “Quarries of Wandering Form”

16:30 – 17:00 Q&A Panel with Dana Ariel, Leslie Hakim-Dowek and Judy Rabinowitz Price

17:30 – 19:00 Screening of the video works by Jananne Al-Ani, Judy Rabinowitz Price, Larissa Sansour and Susan Meiselas, curated by Maria Kapajeva.

The screening programme can be found here. 

The screening takes place at Scena F22 / Nova akademska scena. Address: Frankopanska 22 (12-minute walk)


November 17th

10:00 – 10:05 Introduction to the Day Two

Theme Three: Approach

10:05 – 10:35 Sini Kaipainen “A Conflict Photojournalist as a Celebrity-feminist: A Close Reading on Lynsey Addario’s Instagram Profile as Digital Memoir”

10:35 – 11:05 Erica Payet “The work of women photojournalists in the First Gulf War (1990-91)”

11:05 – 11:35 Jenny Matthews “Threads of war” 

11:35 – 12:05 Sandra Vitaljić “Exhibiting the war”

12:05 – 12:35 Rosângela Rennó “Good Apples | Bad Apples”


13:30 – 14:30 Key Note by Susan Meiselas in conversation with Jenny Matthew and Anna Fox

Theme Four: Herstory

14:30 – 15:00 Linda Bertelli & Agnese Ghezzi ”Deconstructing Gerda Taro: Possibilities of a  Tradition Beyond the Canon in Women Photojournalism”

15:00 – 15:30 Sandra Križić Roban “Just footprints on the ground? Two women documenting aftermath of war in Croatia”

15:30 – 16:00 Nestan Nijaradze “First World War in the Lens of the Georgian Woman War reporter”

16:00 – 16:30 Pippa Oldfield “Beyond Bystanders: Women Photographers in the Mexican Revolution (1910—1920)”

16:30 – 17:00 Key observations by the conference committee: Nestan Nijaradze, Sandra Križić Roban, Anna Fox and Maria Kapajeva

17:30 – 19:00 a guided tour by Sandra Križić Roban to an exhibition “Floodlit Room – Women’s Photographic Practice in Croatia” at two venues: Nikola Tesla Technical Museum and Ethnographic Museum (Address: 14 Ivan Mažuranić Square, 10 min walk)