Reparative Frames: Visual Culture after Reconciliation invites international artists, researchers and curators to explore the timely and important question of visual culture in and as a practice of reparation. Defining reparation broadly as both an equitable approach to teaching, representing and learning from difficult histories, and an attempt at repairing relations between subjects, this two-day workshop brings together senior academics and emerging scholars in a dynamic format that responds to debates about reconciliation and redress that emerged during Canada’s sesquicentennial year. Through interdisciplinary conversation, the workshop will connect these issues to international discussions about the unfinished histories of settler colonialism, transatlantic slavery, and forced migration.
Reparation has been adopted as a key conceptual model by many Indigenous groups and cultural commentators internationally, who are motivated, in part, by the sense that the promises of state-sponsored national reconciliation projects of the last three decades have gone unfulfilled. Visual culture—from artworks and exhibitions, to media images and films—has become a key site for critique and for generating encounters that explore the notion of “repair” beyond the bounds of the nation-state. Artists, curators, designers, and activists, as well as scholars across a number of intersecting disciplines mobilize the power of images to shift the responsibility of return and repair away from Indigenous and marginalized communities and onto the reader and viewer. Reparative visual culture, therefore, initiates a call to action that implicates all actors in a system of asymmetrical power relations.
Date: December 6-7 2019
Location: The Art Gallery of Ontario, OCAD University