Presentation and discussion of the show - "A toi appartient le regard" - "Who is gazing" - the infinite connection between things

Online Program

Date: Jun 20, 2020
Time: 03:00 pm - 05:00 pm IST
Venue: Online


Chennai Photo Biennale Foundation and the French Institute in India come together to present a series of virtual engagements with French and Indian artists, curators, heads of museums and galleries. These cross-cultural, knowledge-sharing dialogues amongst international curators and practitioners aim to bring us to intersections of global art practices and themes that are reevaluating the meaning and disposition of lens based art in contemporary contexts.   

Title: Presentation and discussion of the show - "A toi appartient le regard" - "Who is gazing" - the infinite connection between things

Panellists: Christine Barthe, Head of the photographic collection at the Mus?e du Quai Branly, Paris, Exhibiting Artists Dayanita Singh (India) and Heba Y Amin (Egypt)

We will be in conversation with Christine Barthe, head of the photographic collection at the Mus?e du Quai Branly in Paris and exhibiting artists from the show - Dayanita Singh and Heba Amin about their respective works ?Museum of Industrial Kitchens' and ?The Earth is an Imperfect Ellipsoid? for the show "A toi appartient le regard" ("Who is gazing"') opening at the Musee du Quai Branly on June 30 in Paris. 

About the show

"A toi appartient le regard"/ "Who is gazing?" - the infinite connection between things

The show "Who is gazing? and the infinite connection between things" presents the work of 26 artists working from 18 different countries. Curated by Christine Barthe, the showcase features all forms of contemporary images (Photography, Videos, installations) that explore the relationship between photographic and filmed images. The works presented were produced between 1992 and 2019. The exhibition opens on June 30 at Mus?e du Quai Branly, Paris. 

The title sentence comes from a text written in 1801 by the German writer Ludwig H?lsen. During a trip abroad, while discovering the Rhine Falls, he describes his visual perception and how his eye has the ability to reconstruct a unit in a foreign landscape previously perceived in fragments.

Is the image frozen at a glance?

The first part of the journey is made up of 6 sets of photographs, which evoke the relationship with the landscape, and how the photographic operation of the framing can be compared to a way of cutting out, taking, not only in reality, but also in nature.

The second part will question relationship of photographic with memory, but especially with the identification processes that photography allows. How we identify with images, with people through images.

The pictures think of each other

This part gives way to forms of visual storytelling, or how associations of images can produce stories, and counter stories. Many works showcased in this part use film, video, moving images and question the use of images as a reference, as a resource, as an archive.

Landscape stories

The works here act as possibilities for alternative stories, related to specific, but little known episodes of our history, where the image will operate as a revealer of a situation, or an interrogation.

Passages in time

In this last section we remain in the relation to history. We can see how representations that are distant in time can suddenly take on a new topicality, or  can be questioned, reactivated, reversed. We are seeing here telescoping images, with works that often use irony as a technique of demonstration and conviction.
In staggered temporalities, one can observe cyclical variations in the representation of an exoticism from which one never completely emerges.

The last work of the route evokes a journey through the landscape which is also a journey through time, between the 19th and 20th centuries. We can find here the echo of the sentence in the title of the exhibition, the experience of observation related to walking. An experience close to that of the visitor in the exhibition, who wanders, listens, and sees.

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Panellists Bio

Christine Barthe - @christinebarthe
Christine Barthe is Curator, Head of the photographic collection at the musee du quai Branly-Jacques Chirac, Paris, France. She leads important acquisitions of old and contemporary photography from across the world. Her research focuses  on contemporary non-western photography in Asia, Latin America Africa and the Pacific and she offers lectures on the same. She is the curator of the exhibition A toi appartient le regard et (?) la liaison infinie entre les choses, musee du quai Branly-Jacques Chirac, April-November 2020, a large show dedicated to contemporary creation in photography and video installations through the world.

Among her other curations are : Photographs, An Early Album of the World at the Louvre Abu Dhabi Museum (2019). At the mus?e du quai Branly Jacques Chirac : Nocturnes de Colombie, images contemporaines? (2013), Patagonie, Images du bout du monde? (2012), Camera Obscura? (2007), Le Yucat?n est ailleurs, Exp?ditions photographiques (1857-1886) de D?sir? Charnay (2007).

With Xavier Barral, she also co-curated the exhibition of Martin Gusinde, L?esprit des hommes de Terre de Feu in Arles (2015), in Kyoto, Ushuaia, Argentina (2015) and in Santiago, Chile (2016).

Her published work includes : Photographs, An Early Album of the World, KAPH, 2019, L?esprit des hommes de la Terre de Feu, El Espiritu de los Hombres de Tierra del Fuego, ed. Xavier Barral, 2015, and wrote an essay in Contemporary Art Colombia, TransGlobe Publishing, 2017. She is a member of the selection committee for the grant program Les R?sidences photographiques du mus?e du quai Branly, dedicated to contemporary photography that she curates, which will be held in 2020 at the musee du quai Branly-Jacques Chirac.

Dayanita Singh | IND - @dayanitasingh

Dayanita Singh?s art uses photography to reflect and expand on the ways in which we relate to photographic images. Her recent work, drawn from her extensive photographic oeuvre, is a series of mobile museums that allow her images to be endlessly edited, sequenced, archived and displayed. Stemming from Singh?s interest in the archive, the museums present her photographs as interconnected bodies of work that are replete with both poetic and narrative possibilities.

Publishing is also a significant part of the artist?s practice: in her books, often made in collaboration with Gerhard Steidl, she experiments with alternate forms of producing and viewing photographs. Here, Singh?s latest is the ?book-object,? a work that is concurrently a book, an art object, an exhibition and a catalogue. This work, also developing from the artist?s interest in the poetic and narrative possibility of sequence and re-sequence, allows Singh to both create photographic sequence and also simultaneously disrupt it.

Heba Y. Amin | EGY - @hebayamin

Artist Heba Y. Amin grounds her work in extensive research that looks at the convergence of politics, technology, and architecture. Techno-utopian ideas, as manifest in characteristic machines of colonial soft power, are at the heart of Amin?s work. Starting from the idea that landscape is an expression of dominant political power ? Heba Y. Amin looks for tactics of subversion and other techniques to undermine consolidated systems and flip historical narratives through a critical spatial practice.

Amin teaches at Bard College Berlin, is a doctorate fellow in art history at Freie Universit?t, and a current Field of Vision fellow in NYC. She is the co-founder of the Black Athena Collective, the curator of visual art for the MIZNA journal (US), and co-curator for the biennial residency program DEFAULT with Ramdom Association (IT).  She has had recent exhibitions at the B?ttcherstrasse Prize Exhibition, MAXXI Museum, 10th Berlin Biennale, 15th Istanbul Biennale, Kunstlerhaus Bethanien Berlin, Karachi Biennale KB17, 11th African Biennale Photography, 12th Dak?Art Biennale Kalmar, FACT Liverpool, Kunsthalle Wien, the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, the Kunstverein in Hamburg, Camera Austria, Berlin Berlinale 9th Forum Expanded Exhibition, and the IV Moscow International Biennale for Young Art. Amin also has an extensive repertoire in public speaking and was a recent resident artist at the K?nstlerhaus Bethananien residency program in Berlin. Furthermore, Amin is also one of the artists behind the subversive graffiti action on the set of the television series ?Homeland? which received worldwide media attention. Amin lives and works in Berlin.


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