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Plenary: Anti-Colonial Imaginary and Embodied Memories 
Ariella Azoulay (Brown University)
Kader Attia
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Start time:
9 March, 2023 at
Time zone: Europe/London
Session slots:

Short Abstract:

In a conversational format Ariella Azoulay and Kader Attia will talk about jewellery as carriers of wounds, memories and about the potential of repair in the long history of the (de)colonization of Algeria. Azoulay’s film, “Like a Jewel in the Hand” will be their point of departure.

Long Abstract:

“The world like a jewel in the hand” is the sequel to her “Un-Documented–Unlearning Imperial Plunder (2019). In both films Azoulay uses the camera to question, and refuse, the way Algerian Jews, like herself and other Jews who live(d) in other Muslim countries, are transformed into an extinct species as museums display their plundered objects as artifacts of a bygone world. Instead of accepting this verdict and treating these documents as sealed or these objects as pieces of art and relics of “history,” the film presents them as invitations to others to resistance, reinterpretation, and reclamation of a world deemed “lost.”

“The world like a jewel in the hand” was shot in the space of her exhibition, “Errata” (Fundació Antoni Tàpies, Barcelona, co-curated with Carles Guerra) where material culture and visual archives were approached not as sealed and unalterable visual and textual accounts of the ‘past’, but rather as elements that can still be rejected, re-composed, amended, reversed, erased and reclaimed.

Kader Attia is an artist and a curator who explores the legacy of colonialism, the ongoing impact of Western culture and politics on the Middle East and North Africa, as well as the impact within Western countries themselves.

Ariella Aïsha Azoulay is a writer, curator and film essayist who engages with the theory and practice of unlearning imperialism and generating potential histories as well as modes of re-inhabiting worlds destroyed by imperialism. She is a professor of Modern Culture and Media and the Department of Comparative Literature at Brown University.

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