FAST FORWARD/TASWEER RESEARCH WORKSHOP
Fast Forward: Women in Photography
Tasweer Photo Festival
May 22-23, 2021, Qatar / Zoom
Mashael Al Hejazi
Artist Mashael Al Hejazi discussed her interest in looking at historic Qatari neighbourhoods, and being inspired by the architecture, and patina of social histories of these spaces, Al Hejazi started taking photographs of the buildings and streets where her family used to live in the Al Najada district of Doha. During a residency at Qatar Museum’s Fire Station, she started to print her work using the cyanotype printing process to draw out the details and historical-yet-still-present nature of the neighbourhood, and using this process to map the area. In addition, Mashael Al Hejazi created portraits of her family and contemporary residents to re-animate and re-populate the interiors of the carefully restored Al Najada House #15, commemorating this founding residential district of the State of Qatar.
Mashael Al Hejazi is a Qatari photographer, living in Doha. Her passion for photography was ignited when she acquired her first Polaroid and Kodak 110 cameras. She is developing her personal style and searching for authenticity in the digital world, looking at how the past is reflected in the technology of the future. During her artist residency at Fire Station in Doha, and for her commissioned installation Contemporary Heritage: My Mother Lulwa’s House at a restored Al Najada district home, Mashael has been working with local photographers and projects to capture memories of Doha neighbourhoods for the next generation. Her project Tawtheeq focuses on the people and architecture of old Doha, capturing the rapidly changing daily life in the city. She is using her research into alternative photographic processes as the basis of the project, employing 19th century printing techniques such as Cyanotype and Gum Bichromate printing. www.tasweer.qa/cohe-mash
Rahaab Allana’s research considers the sustainability of photography and the use of online communication tools such as Zoom, Instagram, and other Apps. Sending one image over the internet takes an immense amount of energy. He considers these concepts in light of unstable politics that may occur post the pandemic. In his presentation Allana drew attention to the constant tracking and cyber discrimination that takes place on social networking sites such as Instagram and is interested in the exclusionary as much as the inclusionary aspects of cyber culture. Rahaab Allana started PIX magazine foregrounding emerging photography from South Asia and also the App ASAP Connect: Alternative South Asia Photography.
Rahaab Allana is Curator/Publisher, Alkazi Foundation for the Arts in New Delhi; Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society (London) and was previously, Honorary Research Associate at the University College, London (Department of Visual Anthropology). He has curated, contributed to and edited several publications and exhibitions on South Asian photography and its trans-national histories. He serves, and has served on the Advisory Committee/Juries of various cultural fora including the Prix Pictet Award (London/Switzerland/Paris); the Gabriele Basilico Prize in Architecture and Landscape Photography; as well as the Editorial Board of the Trans-Asia Photography (TAP) Review, University of Michigan. He is the Founding/Managing Editor of PIX; Founder of the first app for photography from South Asia called ASAP Connect; and is Guest Editor for the next issue of Aperture Magazine (NY) due in the summer 2021. alkazifoundation.org ; enterpix.in ; asapconnect.in
Investigating her Yemeni family’s migration histories and the pattern of movement, Shaima Al-Tamimi uses archival photos and materials from her own family history in order to witness and animate a personal and familial history of relationships and migration. Shaima Al-Tamimi explores the act of sharing our vulnerabilities with an audience/viewers and spoke about how this project has been painful, therapeutic and defining for her creative practice.
Shaima Al-Tamimi is Yemeni-Kenyan artist, who tells deeply personal and resonant stories of experience, relationality, and memory through photography, film and writing. Al-Tamimi has created two “chapters” of a long term project – As if we never came, which is a photographic delving into her ancestral history; and Don’t get too comfortable, a recently completed photo-narrative video framed as a letter to her paternal grandfather. Shaima is currently developing the third “chapter” that consolidates her family’s archives using immersive Augmented Reality technologies. Shaimaaltamimi.squarespace.com
Youth culture, low fi music videos and stills have inspired Shaima Ayoub’s practice. Ayoub discussed how she began her career by shooting on film, on her phone, and an old digital camera, encouraged by her lecturers to be obsessed and have a tight focus on her ideas. She is known for her fly on the wall approach particularly in her series that documents her early adulthood in London including her Bright Young Things a zine concerned with the punk subculture in London.. Her current work, based in Qatar, is focused on research and the use of archival materials.
Shaima Ayoub is a photographer, image-maker and researcher from London, currently living and working in Doha. Holding a BA in Fashion Communication from Middlesex University, with a focus on image-making, Shaima then went on to receive her MA in Museum and Gallery Practice from UCL. Along with graphic designer Sara Alfifi, she has curated the publication celebrating Tasweer’s inaugural Sheikh Saoud Al Thani Awards and is a member of the photo collective Photo Art Qatar. www.shaimaayoub.com
Julie Boukobza presented her curatorial project on streetwear focused on the practices of Jamel Shabazz, Sara Sadik, and Mohamed Bourouissa, inspired by their dialogical and multivalent creative practices. The resulting exhibition brings together photography, fashion and architecture and will be on show at the VCUQ Art Gallery in Doha, Qatar in Autumn 2021.
Julie Boukobza is a curator based in Paris and Arles, head of the Luma Arles Residency Program. In 2016, she curated the exhibition Pure Fiction at Marian Goodman gallery and a solo show of Peter Shire at New Galerie, both in Paris. In July 2017, she co-curated with Simon Castets a group show at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade called FADE IN 2 EXT. MODERNIST HOME. She ran an artist-run space in Paris with the curator Stéphanie Moisdon and the artist Matthew Lutz-Kinoy in 2018/2019. In January 2020, she curated the solo exhibition The End of the British artist Michael Dean at Converso in Milan. In 2021, she will curate two group exhibitions, one at Brausnfelder Family Collection in Cologne in September and another one at the Virginia Commonwealth University’s gallery in Qatar. In 2022, she will co-curate an exhibition with Julia Morandeira Arrizabalaga at CA2M in Madrid.
Aldeide Delgado did a presentation titled Making spaces, Creating communities: Women Photographers International Archive. In 2016 Women Photographers International Archive was created (WOPHA). Primarily WOPHA provides documents on women in photography as well as providing information to universities, symposiums, exhibitions, and monographs. Through her research Aldeide Delgado has found that there is a lack of Cuban women photographers being represented in the histories of photography. Because of this she has created a catalogue of Cuban women photographers from the 19th century to the present. This archive is continuously updated. Delgado curated the exhibition Building a feminist archive: Cuban women photographers in the US. This exhibition was the first time that the experiences of Cuban women photographers was exhibited in the US. In addition, they have also organised the WOPHA Congress which creates a critical space for photography by bringing together worldwide organizations of women photographers as well as launching the WOPHA membership which brings together social action and advocacy in photographic arts.
Aldeide Delgado is the founder and director of Women Photographers International Archive (WOPHA). She has a background in advising and presenting at art history forums based on photography including lectures at the Tate Modern, Pérez Art Museum Miami, California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), and The New School. Delgado is a recipient of a 2019 Knight Arts Challenge, the 2018 School of Art Criticism Fellowship from SAPSTL-INBA, and a 2017 Research and Production of Critical Essay Fellowship from TEOR/éTica. Her areas of scholarly interest include a feminist and decolonial re-reading of the history of photography from the Latin American, the Caribbean and Latinx contexts. She is an active member of PAMM’s International Women’s Committee, IKT International Association of Curators of Contemporary Art, US Latinx Art Forum and Art Table.www.wopha.org
Christine Eyene is an art historian and curator. She has created the project Yaounde to promote emerging Cameroonian artists. Eyene provides portfolio reviews, seminars on visual culture and discussions with Cameroonian artists questioning the western perspective on Cameroon. She has created a website to showcase the artists’ work and this acts as a digital portfolio for the artists as many of them do not have their own websites. Christine Eyene discussed the difficulty that photographers in Cameroon face when making work about sensitive topics because of the repercussions that can happen due to the political situation at this time. There are many narratives that have not yet been told because of the danger of exploring these issues. She is now exhibiting Cameroonian artists in England, Japan, and Casablanca as well as developing a new project in rural Cameroon to continue to connect photographers and support Cameroonian artists.
Christine Eyene is a London-based French-Cameroonian curator. In 2018, she curated the Summer of Photography 2018 at BOZAR (Brussels) and has organised numerous photography exhibitions as part of biennials and festivals including: FORMAT International Photography Festival (Nottingham, 2015); Summer of Photography (Brussels, 2014); 3rd PHOTOQUAI – Biennial of World Images (Paris, 2011); GWANZA: Month of Photography (Harare, 2011) and Brighton Photo Fringe (2010). In 2016, with Cameroonian curator Landry Mbassi, she co-founded YaPhoto, a project supporting emerging photographers in Cameroon. She continues to run the online platform Yaounde Photo Network (YPN) with a focus on exhibiting young Cameroonian photographers internationally and has presented them at OGU MAG, Tokyo (2017), Unseen Amsterdam (2018) and BiC Project Space, Casablanca (2019). www.eyonart.org
Sabeena Gadihoke’s presentation is ‘Revisiting Historical Archives: The Creative Distractions of Manobina Roy’. Gadihoke’s research takes an investigative look at the extraordinary archive of the twin daughters of the tutor to the maharajah. During the time that these images were created photography was a past time for the elite and photographs were often taken inside in photographic studios. Gadihoke’s exploration of this archive exposes the freedom of the middle classes to be able to move in elite circles and how this freedom directly impacted on the photography made by the twins. Her presentation asked us to consider the resilience of material archives and the need for more serious and vigorous investigations of amateur photography by women.
Sabeena Gadihoke is Professor at the AJK MCRC at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi where she teaches Digital Media Arts. A photo historian and curator, she started her career as an independent documentary filmmaker and cameraperson. Her film Three Women and a Camera won awards at Film South Asia at Kathmandu (1999) and the Mumbai International Film Festival (2000). She was a Fulbright Fellow at Syracuse University during 1995-6 and her book on India’s first woman press photographer Homai Vyarawalla, Camera Chronicles of Homai Vyarawalla (Mapin/ Parzor Foundation) was published in 2006. Gadihoke has curated several shows on photography, the most recent being a retrospective of photographer Jitendra Arya titled Light Works at the National Gallery of Modern Art at Bombay and Bangalore during 2018-9. Her research interests focus on the intersection of the still and moving image and she has written on contemporary documentary films, photo history, popular visual culture and female stardom in Bombay cinema.
Rula Halawani discussed the breadth of work she has created, investigating the experiences of living in occupied Palestine and the urgency of reclaiming and recounting Palestinian histories through her use of archival images and a range of photographic processes. Since 2008, Halawani’s practice has centered on both personal and collective narratives of Palestinian culture – for instance, collecting historical photographs of Palestinian communities and returning (through projection installations) and embedding (through compound printing) the narratives of Palestinian culture and its land. Rula Halawani continues to work with archival images exposing deeply felt, sensitive political issues, and creating evidence-based stories about the land of Palestine.
Rula Halawani. As a native of occupied East Jerusalem, Rula Halawani began her artistic career by registering the difficulties of living under a protracted political conflict. Halawani’s early works capture the many aspects of this reality, from the tedious moments of attempting to perform daily tasks under the restrictions of military occupation to the cyclical onset of violent siege that transforms Palestinian neighbourhoods, towns, and cities into overnight war zones. Rula’s recent work focuses on the traces of lives and history that can still be found in often overlooked details, whether in the material culture of Palestinian society or the transformed landscapes of her childhood. Halawani is based in Jerusalem, where, in addition to her artistic practice, she was the founding director and an associate professor of the Photography program at Birzeit University. She is a recipient of Tasweer’s inaugural Sheikh Saoud Al Thani Project Award grant that supports her newly-started For you Mother 2 – a series of photographs made with discontinued film stock, dedicated to her mother and Halawani’s childhood memories of wildflowers in Palestine and the disappearing Palestinian landscape, now replaced by Israeli settlements. Utilizing traditional photographic means, Halawani calls forth the pre-1948 history of Palestinian culture and landscapes. www.tasweer.qa/project-award-1
Maryam Hassan Al-Thani
Maryam Hassan Al-Thani spoke about how her family history as interlocutors in the building of a cultural understanding of art in Qatar, helping to seed an alternative vantage point to the predominant Western art history canon, including the formation of Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha, and the creation of space and acknowledgement of Arab artists. These tenets of building Arab histories and artistic space is central to her curatorial work and research.
Maryam Hassan Al-Thani has worked on a multitude of curatorial projects for Qatar Museums, and is the instigator and curator of Tasweer’s Contemporary Heritage Project – with 3 commissioned installations by artists Hadeer Omar, Shaha Al Khulaifi and Mashael Al Hejazi at 3 of Qatar’s heritage sites. Maryam has previously worked on the photographic aspect of Qatar Contemporary: Art and Photography presented in Russia (2018), and has also served as the curator of the exhibition Cultural Exposures: Photography and Film from Qatar in Berlin (2017). She has also curated the exhibition Fragments: An Exhibition by Mahmoud Obaidi (2016) while working for Qatar Museums and has previously commissioned international artists for the National Museum of Qatar. Her work on public art commissions include Richard Serra: East-West; KAWS: Small Lie; Jean Michel-Othoniel: Cosmos; and Simone Fattal: Gates of the Sea.
Kirsten Lubben presented the Magnum Foundation which is an independent organisation that provides grants and support for documentary photographers. The organisation is run by all women and non-binary people and supports new production through grants for 20-50 photographers per year. These are paired with publications, exhibitions, and mentorship opportunities. They also run a series of fellowships and support through experimental workshops that explore new modes of making. Lubben shared examples of the photographers’ projects and The Nepal Picture Library. The Magnum Foundation has also developed the Arab Documentary Photography program that annually supports ten artists, including an intensive workshop in Beirut with four mentors.
Kristen Lubben is the former long-time curator at the International Center of Photography, New York and is now executive director of the Magnum Foundation.
Shoair Mavlian is the director of Photoworks, she is currently interested in reworking and challenging the traditional model for photo festivals. The pandemic forced alternative festivals to become a reality. In order to adapt to the difficult circumstances Mavlian and her team at Photoworks removed the regular geographical location that a festival normally occupies by creating a festival in a box allowing the festival to become unhooked from a particular space (in England) and to work on a much more global scale. This portable festival eliminates the need for travel which relies on privilege that may not be available to everyone. Each festival can be exhibited anywhere in your home, a coffee shop, and with your community, however you choose. The festival in a box arrives to your home and features 11 artists from all over the world. In addition, there were essays and interpretation cards included in the box.
Shoair Mavlian is Director of Photoworks, U.K. She is responsible for strategic vision and artistic direction of the organization. Recent Photoworks projects include Photoworks Festival: Propositions for Alternative Narratives (2020) and Brighton Photo Biennial: A New Europe (2018). From 2011-2018, Mavlian was Assistant Curator, Photography and International Art at Tate Modern where she curated exhibitions including Don McCullin (2019); Shape of Light: 100 Years of Photography and Abstract Art (2018); and Conflict, Time, Photography (2014). Mavlian has a background in photographic practice and the history of photography, with a focus on conflict and memory, Central and Latin American photography and emerging contemporary practice. photoworks.org.uk
Motlhoki Nono is a recent graduate from Johannesburg South Africa. She works with moving image exploring love and how social economic and political matters impact on how we understand love. Motlhoki takes an African feminist approach to her subject stripping away narratives and investigates traditional photographic processes and archives. She questions how she herself practices love as well as exploring if love is something that can be inherited. As part of AAF Motlhoki has received a project grant to create work about black women’s experience of sweetness and love. She does this by creating a space for women to talk about their desires for love.
Motlhoki (Mabopane, Pretoria) has currently completed her Honours in Fine Art at the University of the Witwatersrand, where she graduated with five distinctions, and top of her class. Her studio practice is currently based in Johannesburg, where she uses Video and Printmaking as tools to investigate the textures of intimacies and violences that are implicated in romantic love. Nuanced ideas of inheritance, consumption, texture, and materiality are notable qualities in her work. Her practice is characterised by a valorisation, problematisation and curiosity towards Black love, as well as abstract narrative and relationalities of space. She defines her practice as a decolonial and sociological enquiry into love.
Renee Mussai presents an illustrated talk Curatorial Interventions, Archival Adventures, Missing Chapters. She discussed Autograph’s commission of Zanele Muholi’s work. Zanele Muholi creates a conversation about the representations of black women. In this series they use the tools of their mother’s labour from scouring pads that become head wraps, washing pins that become ornaments, and washing tubes that become jewellery. Muholi is the first black, queer, non-binary, African artist to have a solo exhibition at the Tate. Renée Mussai aims to create participatory programmes such as the Women’s Mobile Museum which she created with Zanele Muholi and Autograph. She discussed other artists she has exhibited at Autograph including the work of Aida Silvestri who created a body of work called Unsterile Clinic which is about female genital mutilation. Mussai discussed the curatorial difficulty of sharing this work and the approaches she took to enable the work to be seen. She also discussed the project The missing Chapter Black Chronicle an ongoing project which is looking at the absence of black images in Victorian archives.
Renée Mussai is a curator and scholar with a special interest in African and diasporic lens-based visual arts practices. She is Senior Curator and Head of Curatorial & Collection at Autograph, London; Research Associate at the Visual Identities in Art and Design Research Centre, University of Johannesburg; Associate Lecturer at University of the Arts London, and regular guest curator and former Fellow at the Hutchins Centre for African & African American Research at Harvard University. Mussai has curated numerous exhibitions during the past decade, and lectures / publishes regularly on photography, visual culture, and curatorial activism. www.autograph.org.uk
Tomi Olukosi presented the programme African Artists’ Foundation (AAF) develops during various years. AAF organise Lagos Photo Festival and believes that photography gives means to storytelling for those who do not necessarily have access to the arts. They are dedicated to retelling the story of Africa from their own perspective. AAF run mentorship programmes and workshops focused on amplifying voices of those who are not traditionally heard or who do not have access to networking opportunities. AAF also have a female artist platform where they exhibit women artists and hold skills acquisition workshops with Canon and the National Arts Competition. They aim to give equitable access, amplify women’s voices, challenge dangerous stereotypes, provoke dialogue and humanise women.
Tomi Olukosi is an architect, fashion illustrator, and writer. She has offered curatorial assistance over the years to Open House Lagos, Art Summit Nigeria, Women’s Film Club, as well as various artist exhibitions. She holds a bachelors in Architecture from the University of Lagos, and currently serves as development manager at the African Artists’ Foundation.
Hadeer Omar presented her work, drawing attention to the importance of iterative processes and research over fixed final outcomes. In her work, Hadeer Omar crosses and mixes media and technologies, using digital fabrication to observe and “hack” the camera to create her own narratives. She also works with 3D objects that she imbeds within her photographic installations. In addition to her art practice, she discussed her role as an educator and the project that she is currently creating with her students working with memories and the experience of quarantine.
Hadeer Omar is an Egyptian visual and time-based media artist, and educator. She holds a BFA in Graphic Design (2010) and MFA in Design Studies (2016) from Virginia Commonwealth University, School of the Arts in Qatar (VCUarts Qatar). Her passion for documentary and cultural movements crosses disciplines within art, design, and film, as a means of presenting her identity through her work. She combines mediums to explore various techniques and methods to produce her illustrations, photographs, and videos. With no formal training in photography, the artist found her way by utilizing digital and analog tools, to observe her surroundings, document her process, and build a body of work that tells stories. Her experimentation with photography is not limited to portraiture, street, conceptual, or editorial photography. She approaches photography as a form of self-expression, and reflection of current political and social events. www.hadeeromar.com.
Mary Pelletier and Olga Stefatou
Mary Pelletier and Olga Stefatou discussed how they find that their work is a combination of activism, cataloguing, consultancy, and research. Pelletier specialises in 19th century photography and Stefatou specialises in the 20th century photography. Working at Qatar Museums with the multiple photography collections, they were responsible for creating a unified digital identity for the archives. They discussed the importance of numbering systems and keywords and how their goal was to have broad accessibility to the collections. While setting up this archive and cataloguing the works, Pelletier and Stefatou had to consider the political, social, ethical, and current local as well as global circumstances. The external political guidelines determined the language of how the work is catalogued and the biggest hurdle in the process was the inevitable breaks in institutional memory and object-specific histories. The collections provide both historical Western perspectives on the Arab world and possibilities to reconstruct and re-appraise the embedded narratives.
Mary Pelletier is a photography historian and writer based in London, whose research focuses on 19th and early 20th century photography in the Middle East. From 2018-2020, she worked as a Senior Photography Specialist with Qatar Museums. From 2016-2018, she was an arts correspondent and archival researcher based in Jerusalem, and prior to that managed James Hyman Gallery, London. Her ongoing research into the photography of Karimeh Abbud was shared at the Fast Forward: Women in Photography conference at the Tate Modern in December 2019, and she is a contributing editor at The Classic photography magazine.
Olga Stefatou is a visual artist and photography consultant. She is currently living in her native country of Greece, after working as a senior photography specialist with Qatar Museums. Stefatou’s mixed media work investigates the idea of freedom and its connection to geopolitics, heritage and social structures, with a special interest in gender issues. Stefatou has exhibited her work widely, including at the Aga Khan Museum (CA); Doha Fire Station art space (QA); Los Angeles Month of Photography; Head On (AU); Les Boutographies (FR); and Gallery Negpos (FR). Stefatou is the creative director of the arts program at Saristra Festival Arts – a festival celebrating music and arts on Cephalonia Island, Greece.
Suereya Shaheen was born in Beirut, relocating to England to attend a boarding school following the 1982 Lebanon War. She became interested in photographing artists in their studios and documented her friends who were artists at that time, who we can now retrospectively see as the critical mass of contemporary Arab artists. Shaheen went on to found the magazine Tribe, which focuses on photography, video, new media by Arab and Arab diaspora artists. This magazine has had to develop a new structure as a result of Covid and it is now a non-profit magazine based in Washington DC. The magazine launches twice a year in Art Dubai and Art Abu Dhabi.
Sueraya Shaheen was born in Beirut, to Syrian parents. After graduating from the Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington D.C., she worked at United Press International and assisted the White House photographer Dirck Halstead. Shaheen is the Photo Editor of Tribe Magazine – a non-profit publication that she co-founded in 2015, focusing on contemporary photography,video, and new media by Arab and Arab diaspora artists and photographers. Her ongoing photographic series – Encounters – constitutes an archive of portraits of contemporary Arab artists and has been exhibited widely. cargocollective.com/suerayashaheen
Adriane de Souza
Adriane de Souza shared a journey of her art practice through four bodies of work starting with her early investigations that look at the representation of her hometown Rio. De Souza’s work seeks to reclaim this personal and social space and change the narrative of Rio by replacing images of violence with those of positive representation. In addition to sharing the narrative of her community she also discussed autobiographical projects where she opens up the idea that being free is to be vulnerable, transparent, and confident about who you are.
Adriane de Souza is a Brazilian photographer currently based in Doha, Qatar. She received her BA degree in Sociology from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). She began to make photographs as a way of self-liberation, research, and to further understand human interactions and emotions. The goal of her work is to find personal freedom and provide tools for others to do the same. Her ongoing project – I am not my father – explores concepts of masculinity. Qawiya (قوية) [strong] focuses on the presence and importance of women in sports in Qatar. De Souza is a member of the collective Photo Art Qatar, jurying and curating Tasweer’s 2021 Sheikh Saoud Al Thani Single Image Award. She is currently creating and facilitating a series of workshops and online resources for the International Girl Scouts movement, in collaboration with Tasweer. www.adrianedesouza.com
Anni Wallenius and her team have been collecting social photos over three years as part of Instagram Finland researching how museums and archives can change how they work with photography collections in the age of social media. Wallenius’s work questions what social digital photographs mean for archives. They have found that through collecting social images through Instagram that they have to now consider trustworthiness, non-standardised formats, and collection databases inability to host complex digital objects. Never before have so many people photographed and shared so much of their everyday lives. These images have outnumbered and, in some cases, replaced analogue photographs. There is the possibility that these images will not be available in the future as services are shut down, accounts are cancelled, and people lose their archives. We may be entering a digital dark age of preserving the visual culture heritage of our time. These platforms are not committed to long term preservation of this content. Photography archives need to begin collecting this content in real time. The project anthology Connect to collect : approaches to collecting social digital photography in museums and archives is available online: link.
Anni Wallenius works as Chief Collections Curator at The Finnish Museum of Photography in Helsinki, Finland. Her background lies in art history and museology. In her work she is interested in finding new methods and practices to bring photography collections, collecting and audiences together in meaningful, relevant ways. The Finnish Museum of Photography is a national specialized museum of photography in Finland with an aim of documenting and collecting different historical and contemporary photographic cultures. https://www.valokuvataiteenmuseo.fi/en, collectingsocialphoto.nordiskamuseet.se
Val Williams’ presentation focussed on how women photographers have put their careers together with a particular focus on the UK. She has found that there is very little written today about how contemporary women are working. Women photography students were rare in the 70’s very few women were collected in major museums or collections. In her research Williams has found that women photography curators were not uncommon in the 1980’s as they were more easily accessible for women to get into museums unfortunately it didn’t mean more women photographers were exhibited. Women who were shown in museums were the exception not the norm. Williams discussed the mythology of the male photographers at this time and how women did not fit into this mould. She went into detail about how in photography history, women photographers (post war) became interested in business and ran studios that employed many other women in addition to taking care of their families. Into the 1960’s photography became a profoundly serious business that women played a huge role in.
Val Williams is a curator and writer, and UAL Professor of the History and Culture of Photography, London College of Communication She co-edits Photography & Culture and is on the Board of Fast Forward, Women in Photography, and co- convenes its biannual conference. Val was the founder director of Impressions Gallery, co- directed the Shoreditch Photo Biennale and began the Oral History of British Photography. Curated and co-curated/authored and co-authored projects include How We Are (Tate Britain); Daniel Meadows (Library of Birmingham); Warworks (V&A); Martin Parr (Barbican Art Gallery/ Phaidon); The Dead (National Media Museum); Who’s Looking at the Family? (Barbican); The Other Observers: Women’s Photography in Britain (National Museum of Photography / Virago); Ken: To be destroyed (Schwules Museum, Berlin/ Schilt); Soho Archives and Soho Nights and Tish Murtha (Photographers Gallery); Seaside: Photographed (Turner Contemporary/ Thames&Hudson).
The other participants of the workshop who haven't presented but fully contributed to the discussions:
Hayat Ahmed Yahya Alsharif
Yemeni-based photojournalist Hayat Ahmed Yahya Alsharif shares human-scaled stories of women’s lives in Yemen. She is a recipient of Tasweer’s 2021 Sheikh Saoud Al Thani Project Award, granted to support her aims to share close encounters with Yemeni women and their struggle to survive and provide for their families in such extreme conditions of famine, war and a pandemic.
Shaha Al Khulaifi
Shaha Al Khulaifi’s work captures the essence of architecture and the ever-shifting landscape through photography. Her work observes and records the complex environment in which we live, the impact of rapid urban growth and the contemporary experience of the people living in a developing city. Shaha’s photographs are printed and layered using different materials and textures such as glass and mirrors to form a third dimension portraying the evolution of a city that is expanding and taking new forms. www.tasweer.qa/cohe-shaha
Patricia Azevedo, born in Recife, Brazil, is graduated in Philosophy at Université Paris VIII, has a Master’s degree in Philosophy and PhD in Visual Arts both at University Federal of Minas Gerais, where she is Professor in the Visual Arts Course and Director of Photography and Cinema Department. As an artist, she develops collaborative projects, investigating language, territory and power, working in the public space and internet platforms through relationships established between people and the communicative act. She is included in exhibitions, publications and residences in Brazil and abroad. She composes the curatorship team of FIF BH – International Photography Festival of Belo Horizonte, Brazil and is member of the Steering Committee of Fast Forward Women in Photography.
Susan Collins works in response to specific sites and situations often employing transmission, networking and time as primary materials. Key works include the BAFTA nominated Tate in Space, commissioned for Tate Online (2002); Underglow (2005-6), a network of illuminated drains for the Corporation of London and Brighter Later (2013), a light installation for the Radcliffe Observatory, Oxford driven by live weather data. Since 2002 she has made lens-based year-long live internet transmissions from remote locations, the latest of which is Current (2020-21) transmitting pixel-by-pixel from a ship anchored in the Greek Peloponnese. Collins is an artist and Professor of Fine Art at the Slade School of Fine Art, UCL. http://www.susan-collins.net
Charlotte Cotton is a curator, writer and creative consultant who has explored photographic culture for over twenty years. She has held positions including curator of photographs at the Victoria and Albert Museum, head of programming at The Photographers’ Gallery in London, curator and head of the Wallis Annenberg Department of Photography at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and curator-in-residence at Katonah Museum of Art, NY; International Center of Photography, NY; Metabolic Studio, CA; and California Museum of Photography. Her book, The Photograph as Contemporary Art, is published in ten languages and has been a key text in charting the rise of photography as an undisputed art form in the 21st century. The fourth edition was published in September 2020. Her curatorial projects and books include Words Without Pictures (2008-10); Photography is Magic (2012-15); Public, Private, Secret: On Photography and the Configuration of Self (2016-18). She is currently the Artistic Director of the inaugural Tasweer Photo Festival Qatar.
Anna Fox is one of the most acclaimed British photographers of the last 35 years, best known for Work Stations: Office Life in London (1988), a study of office culture in Thatcher’s Britain. As Professor of Photography at University for the Creative Arts, Fox directs the project Fast Forward: Women in Photography. Her solo shows include Photographer’s Gallery, London, Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, Shanghai Center of Photography and group shows include Centre of the Creative Universe: Liverpool and the Avant Garde at Tate Liverpool and How We Are: Photographing Britain at Tate Britain. In 2010 Fox was shortlisted for the Deutsche Borse Photography Prize. www.annafox.co.uk
Shohini Ghosh is Director and Sajjad Zaheer Professor at the AJK Mass Communication Centre, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. She is the director of Tales of the Nightfairies (2002) a documentary about the Sex Workers Rights movement in Calcutta and the author Fire: A Queer Classic (2010) published by Arsenal Pulp Press, Vancouver /Orient Publishing (2011), New Delhi. Tales of the Nightfairies won the Best Film award at Jeevika 2003- the National Livelihood Documentary Competition. The film made an important intervention in the debate on decriminalization of sex work both and continues to be used extensively by academics, activists and sex workers groups. She has been Visiting Associate Professor at the Department of Communication, Cornell University, USA (1990-1996); Globalization-McArthur Fellow at the University of Chicago, Fellow at the Gender, Sexuality and Law Research Group of the Law Department at Keele University, UK and Visiting Professor to the Summer Institute on Sexuality, Culture and Society at the International School for Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Currently, she is Visiting Professor to James P. Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University, Bangladesh.
Mona Hassan’s investigative photojournalism includes working with the limestone quarry workers in the Manya Governorate of Upper Egypt, demonstrating her capacity to create unforgettable images of remote, underrepresented and unseen human life. Hassan was awarded a Sheikh Saoud Al Thani Project Award in 2021, for her proposal to continue to gain the trust and travel with a nomadic Arab tribe in search of pasture for their livestock, through the governorates of Egypt.
Elina Heikka is Museum Director at The Finnish Museum of Photography in Helsinki since 2007. The Museum, founded in 1969, is the national special museum for photography and puts on exhibitions of Finnish and foreign contemporary photography, and presents the diverse history of photography. Elina Heikka holds MA in art history. She was editor and editor-in-chief in Valokuva – Finnish Photography magazine from 1994 to1998. After that she worked as a researcher at the Finnish Museum of Photography and as a special researcher at the National Gallery / Central Art Archives from 2001 to 2007. She has published widely on contemporary photography, history of Finnish photography, contemporary art and visual culture. www.valokuvataiteenmuseo.fi
Maria Kapajeva is an artist, who works between Estonia and London. Her work often highlights peripheral histories, focusing on the representation of women. Her solo shows include Finnish Museum of Photography, Tallinn Art Hall Gallery, Lithuanian Gallery of Photography and Latvian Museum of Photography. Her video works were screened at VAFT in Finland, Luminocity Festival in Canada, NexT Film Festival in Romania and Berlin Feminist Film Week. In 2019 she was awarded with A Woman’s Work: Creative European Programme Grant. Her first bookYou can call him another man was shortlisted for Aperture Photobook Award 2018. The second one Dream Is Wonderful, Yet Unclear was published in 2020. mariakapajeva.com
Maha Khalfan Al Maslamani
Maha Khalfan Al Maslamani is Tasweer Photo Festival Qatar’s Learning & Outreach Coordinator.
Karen Knorr (USA / UK) was born in Germany and grew up in Puerto Rico in the 1960’s. She is Professor of Photography at the University for the Creative Arts since 2010. She lives and works in London, U.K. Karen Knorr won the V International Photography Pilar Citoler Prize in 2011. She has been nominated for the Deutsche Börse in 2011 and 2012 and Prix Pictet in 2012 and 2018. Knorr’s work is included in collections worldwide including Shanghai Center of Photography, National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, USA, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, USA, Tate Museum, UK, Victoria and Albert Museum, UK and Pompidou Museum, France. Since 2020 Karen Knorr supports several charities through her instagram print sales from her Instagram account karen1knorr. karenknorr.com
Thomas Modeen is Director of the QSS Vocational School, Doha.
Christiane Monarchi is the founding editor of the online photography magazine Photomonitor which has published more than 1,200 features online in the past decade. In 2020 she co-founded Hapax Magazine, currently working on its first issue. Christiane is also a free-lance curator, lecturer, artist mentor, and serves on the Board of Photofusion, on the steering committee of Fast Forward, Women in Photography, and as a trustee of The Hyman Foundation. www.photomonitor.co.uk ; www.hapaxmagazine.com
Elizabeth Ransom is a UK based researcher, educator and visual artist working with alternative photographic practices. She is currently enrolled on the PhD research degree programme at the University for the Creative Arts, Farnham. As an artist Ransom takes from her own lived experiences of migration to explore transnationality, home and memory. Ransom’s research builds on theories of migration and place attachment particularly from the perspective of the migrant woman. Her work has been exhibited internationally in the UK, India, Mexico, China and the US. www.elizabethransom.com
Sefa Saglam is Acting Chief of Qatar Museums’ Creative Hub, and Senior Advisor to Tasweer Photo Festival Qatar.
Samar Sayed Baiomy
Samar Sayed Baiomy is an Egyptian photographer and academic. Her ongoing Revive Memories project combines her photography, archival material, oral histories, and academic research to create a deep analysis of the rapid destruction of a historic fishing village in Alexandria, Egypt. Baiomy is a recipient of the Sheikh Saoud Al Thani Project Award grant, supporting her continued use of her photography to document the complete erasure of this seafront village and capture the memories and experiences of its former residents.
Jean Wainwright is a Professor of Contemporary Art and Photography and Director of the Fine Art and Photography Research Centre both at UCA. As a curator, critic and interviewer she has published extensively in the contemporary arts field, contributing to numerous catalogues and books. Along with the entire unedited Audio Arts archive, Wainwright’s ‘conversations’ for Audio Arts magazine were acquired by The Tate Gallery. She has published a number of interviews with woman photographers and has an archive of over 1,800 interviews. She appears regularly on TV and radio and is currently a consultant on a forthcoming BBC series on Andy Warhol. Her recent exhibitions which she both conceived and curated include Beg Steal and Borrow Bermondsey Project Space Powerful Tides: 400 Years of Chatham and the Sea. The Historic Dockyard Chatham. Another Spring: Exeter Phoenix Gallery. Exeter. Gestures of Resistance. Romansto Cultural Centre. Athens. The Data Battlefield. Fotomuseum (FOMU) Antwerp. She also exhibited in Women in Photography – A History of British Trailblazers. With 20 interviews recorded with women artists and included as part of the exhibition. The Lightbox Woking. jeanwainwright.com
Sinem Yoruk was born in London and is currently living in between London and Doha. In 2005, she co- founded Atelier Elipsis, the pioneering studio specializing in fine art printing in Istanbul, implementing museum standard printing with an ethical and global approach. In 2007, she founded and directed Elipsis Gallery, a space dedicated to creating a platform for artists and its emphasis on the importance of the photography as an art form, representing internationally-established and local emerging artists. In 2015, she moved back to London and founded Elipsis Projects a creative consultancy to galleries and non-profit organizations. She has been an ambassador and advisor to inaugural and second edition of Photo London, jury to numerous photography awards and portfolio reviews, also a nominator for the Prix Pictet Awards. Currently based in Doha, consulting Qatar Museums as Head of Exhibitions to the inaugural Tasweer Photography Festival Qatar.