War, Photo Archives and the Temporalities of Cultural Heritage

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War, Photo Archives and the Temporalities of Cultural Heritage

Workshop organized by Costanza Caraffa, Almut Goldhahn (Photothek of the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz – Max-Planck-Institut, Florence) and Ewa Manikowska (Institute of Art of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw) with the generous support of the Deutsch-Polnische Wissenschaftsstiftung

Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz - Max-Planck-Institut
Florence, 18-20 April 2018  

  

What do photographic archives tell us about cultural heritage and the ways it is shaped by military and political conflicts? This workshop seeks to investigate the entanglements between war, cultural heritage and photography from a wider chronological and critical perspective. It aims to broaden the scope of research beyond its traditional focus on the politics of representation and on the consequences of armed conflicts for monumental heritage. Its premise is the recognition that both institutional negotiations and private conversations about what is to be defined as cultural heritage take place very often in relation to conflicts and in front of photographs, photo collections and photo albums – or digital images shared on social networks.

Historically, the notion of cultural heritage was impelled by war and intertwined with the establishment of photographic archives. This notion is anything but static: it has been enlarged and adapted over time in order to serve different political and identity projects. Through international institutions it has been consolidated at the global scale, but also constantly reshaped. Acknowledging the importance of rescue or reconstruction initiatives, the workshop emphasises that these must always be seen in relation to geopolitical agendas and societal contexts. It thus seeks to investigate how photography serves as a tool for the protection and at the same time also for the production of a certain idea of cultural heritage in a given cultural context. It also intends to interrogate recent technological advances, their effectiveness, practical challenges and socio-political consequences. The workshop will therefore contribute to the deconstruction and rethinking of the concept of 'cultural heritage'. This concept will be historicised and problematised vis-à-vis a range of different photographic archives as well as historical and current photographic practices.

The workshop will consider WWI and WWII photographic archives not only as documentation of the destruction of monuments: they also preserve the collective memory of genocide and racism as well as private memories of war. All these aspects play a part in the dynamic process of the making of cultural heritage. It will enquire into the present-day role of these photo archives in post-conflict reconciliation and in preserving and maintaining the heritage and memory of war, and will explore their often contested meanings. Further case studies will help to facilitate a critical analysis of current re-negotiations of cultural heritage that are taking place on a global scale in relation to recent conflicts – e.g. in Syria and Egypt – and digital image production. Last but not least, the workshop will look at photographic archives as cultural heritage, analysing their collective and individual dimensions.
   
 
PROGRAM

WEDNESDAY 18 APRIL

18.00 Evening Lecture
Challenges of Representing History in Museums: Between Academia, Politics and Entertainment 
Pawel Machcewicz | Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Political Studies, Warsaw / Wissenschaftskolleg Berlin
   
   
THURSDAY 19 APRIL

9.30
Introduction
Costanza Caraffa, Almut Goldhahn | Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz
Ewa Manikowska | Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Art, Warsaw

PANEL I  BEYOND MONUMENTS
Chair: Ewa Manikowska | Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Art, Warsaw

10.00
Ruinscapes of Revolution: Photography, Empire and the Irish Revolution 
Justin Carville | Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology

10.45 Coffee Break

11.15
Curating a Revolution
Lucie Ryzova | University of Birmingham

12.00
Futures Deferred: Heritage and Photography in the Shadow of Varosha 
Colin Sterling | University College, London

12.45
Panel Discussion

13.30 Lunch Break
   
    
PANEL II  SYSTEMS OF VALUE
Chair: Tiziana Serena | Università degli Studi di Firenze

14.30
Visual Strategies for Peace-Building: Photographic Archives & Architectural Heritage at UNESCO, c. 1945-60 
Tom Allbeson | Cardiff University

15.15
The Making and Unmaking of Syrian Cultural Heritage. The Photo Archive as a Tool of Negotiating and Shaping Cultural Heritage 
Rasha Kanjarawi | Syrian Heritage Archive Project, Museum für Islamische Kunst, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

16.00 Coffee Break

16.30
The Impact of Armed Conflicts on the Legal Notion of Cultural Heritage
Andrzej Jakubowski | Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Law Studies, Warsaw

17.15
Panel Discussion

17.45 Coffee Break
  
  
18.00
Screening On Photography, Dispossession and Times of Struggle (38 min., 2017)
Introduction by and discussion with the artist Akram Zaatari | Beirut
   
   
FRIDAY 20 APRIL

PANEL III  PRIVATE/PUBLIC
Chair: Hana Gründler | Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz

10.00
A Murder Between Wars: Dr Alfred Wiener's Response to the Assassination of Wilhelm Gustloff, 1936 
Ben Barkow | Wiener Library, London

10.45 Coffee Break

11.15
"We believe in the Objectivity of the Camera...". Private Photo Albums of World War II as Personal Archives and Cultural Heritage 
Petra Bopp | Kolleg-Forschergruppe BildEvidenz, Freie Universität Berlin

12.00
The Personal Space and the Public Space, Peace and War in the Family Photo Archives of the Residents of Donbass (Ukraine) 
Ekateryna Siryk | Donbass – Family Photo Archive Project

12.45
Panel Discussion

13.30 Lunch Break
  
   
PANEL IV  NO ARCHIVE IS INNOCENT
Chair: Almut Goldhahn | Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz

14.30
Order and Melancholy. Photography and Scholarship, 1935-1947 
Hannah Baader | Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin / Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz

15.15
Difficult Past. Nazi Photographic Collection of the Polish Highlanders from Podhale Region 
Stanislawa Trebunia-Staszel | Jagiellonian University, Institute of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, Cracow

16.00
Panel Discussion

16.30 Coffee Break

17.00 Roundtable
Re-cycling Photographic Memories
Pawel Machcewicz, Lucie Ryzova, Akram Zaatari
Chair: Costanza Caraffa
  
   
CONTACT
Costanza Caraffa
E-Mail: caraffa@khi.fi.it

Almut Goldhahn
E-Mail: goldhahn@khi.fi.it
   
  
VENUE
Photothek in Palazzo Grifoni Budini Gattai
Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz – Max-Planck-Institut
Via dei Servi 51
50122 Florence / Italy
  
   
FURTHER INFORMATION
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