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THE INDEPENDENT LIFE OF IMAGES: collaging image histories
THE INDEPENDENT LIFE OF IMAGES: collaging image histories

Thu, 30 Jun


WORKSHOP [online]

THE INDEPENDENT LIFE OF IMAGES: collaging image histories

Time and Place

30 Jun 2022, 17:00 WEST – 28 Jul 2022, 20:00 WEST

WORKSHOP [online]

About this session

THE INDEPENDENT LIFE OF IMAGES: collaging image histories



Photography not only contributed to the development of disciplinary (archaeology, ethnography, anthropology) collections and popular archives but also aided their visibility through the mechanical reproduction of images (Benjamin, 1935), brought about by new media technologies (print, television, and now the internet). On the other hand, collage practices, from the early photomontages to the surrealist phonograms, are associated with breaking dominant conventions and the radical potential of transforming the ways of seeing.

Approaching collections of found material, not as archives, but as image histories allows us to question structures of archival knowledge by bringing into equal dialogue photographs produced in diverse historical, geographical and ideological contexts. This ‘inappropriate’ dialogue, expressed as collage making, provides a strategy for interrogating the social function of photography and for investigating how photographs shape and reshape bodies and identities, since the collision of contradictory meanings opens up gaps in perception.

The Independent Life of Images is a practical workshop that invites participants to engage with a specific archive, image collection or photographic typology that interests them and utilise collage strategies in order to question the dominant narratives inscribed in their production and circulation. In the course of 5 sessions, drawing from a diverse set of practices, from Aby Warburg’s ‘Mnemosyne Atlas’, the work of Carmen Wivant and Thibault Tourmente, by incorporating theoretical positions (W. J. T. Mitchell, Ariella Azoulay) proposing a shift away from an indexical understanding of photography, and through individual presentations and group discussions, each participant will develop an expanded photographic or collage project.

SESSION 1 |  JUNE 30, 2022 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm WEST


SESSION 2 | JULY 07, 2022 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm WEST

PHOTOGRAPHIC TEMPORALITY: Production, Display, Circulation, Erasure

SESSION 3 | JULY 14, 2022 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm WEST


SESSION 4 | JULY 21, 2022 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm WEST

COLLAGE: Fragmentation, editing, montage, sequencing

SESSION 5 | JULY 28, 2022 | 5:00pm - 8:00pm WEST

THE INDEPENDENT LIFE OF IMAGES: Presentation and discussion of works


Aikaterini Gegisian is a visual artist and researcher. Her expanded photographic and moving image practice examines the role of diverse image histories in the production of gender, cultural and national identities. During the ‘archival fever’ of the COVID-19 pandemic, she initiated The Manipulator Vlog, a YouTube channel that documents the shifts in her life and work set against the backdrop of her teenage magazine collection. Between 2017-2019, she was a Research Fellow at the Library of Congress, Washington DC and Künstlerhaus Büchsenhausen, Innsbruck, Austria, developing an episodic essay film on the European integration history, based on post WW2 USA newsreels.  In 2015, she was one of the exhibiting artists at the Armenian Pavilion, 56th Venice Biennale, which received the Golden Lion for best national participation. Further recent shows include The Institut Valencià d’Art Modern (2020); National Arts Museum of China (2018); Kunsthalle Osnabruck (2017) among others.

Image © Aikaterini Gegisian, Exercises in Speaking Out, Volume 1 (Nude), 2020

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