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Seminar: Contemporary Photography in France / online: 21 November 2022

Photographic representations of landscapes have been long used to promote the association between national identity and physical geography. This presentation considers a range of case studies drawn from the artistic practices of Yto Barrada, Bruno Boudjelal, Bouchra Khalili, and Laura Henno that complicate the narratives of national belonging, migration, displacement and homecoming in contemporary France. This presentation is based on material in Contemporary Photography in France: Between Theory and Practice (Leuven University Press, 2022). 

Olga Smith is a historian of contemporary art, writer and curator. As a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow at the University of Vienna, Austria, she is developing a research project with a focus on ‘landscape’ as a form of picturing nature in the Anthropocene. She writes about photography and new imaging technologies, interchanges between art and intellectual ideas, cultural memory, exhibitions and environmental issues. Her research has been published in French, German and English in journals such as Art History, Moving Image Review, Art Journal, Photographies and Fotogeschichte. She is co-editor of Anamnesia: Private and Public Memory in Modern French Culture (Peter Lang, 2009) and sole editor of Photography and Landscape (Photographies, 2019). Her first monograph, Contemporary Photography in France: Between Theory and Practice (Leuven University Press, 2022), received praise as groundbreaking in “opening new perspectives in global media historiographies” and winning grants from the Österreichische Forschungsgemeinschaft and Association for Art History. 

A Sense of Belonging: Territory, Borders, Identity in Contemporary Photography in France 
21 November 2022, 18:00 — 19:30
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