JUNE 26-27, 2019

in the context of
MSA Madrid 2019, Third Annual Memory Studies Association Conference | June 25-28th, 2019
Moncloa Campus, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain

Silvina Der Meguerditchian | Mirta Kupferminc | Susan Meiselas | Lorie Novak | Deborah Willis
Contributions by:
Bilal | Zarife Bitim | Leyla Demir | Nejbir Erkol | Elif Kaya | Zeynep Öztap
Marianne Hirsch | Isin Onol

The pop-up exhibition “Arts of Intervention” brings together an international group of artists connected to the working group on “Women Mobilizing Memory” of Columbia University’s Center for the Study of Social Difference in the context of the Third Annual Memory Studies Association Conference in Madrid, June, 2019. The exhibition is part of a series of events inaugurating the collected volume Women Mobilizing Memory (Columbia University Press, 2019).

Women Mobilizing Memory, a transnational exploration of the intersection of feminism, history, and memory, shows how the recollection of violent histories can generate possibilities for progressive futures. Questioning the politics of memory-making in relation to experiences of vulnerability and violence, this wide-ranging collection asks: How can memories of violence and its afterlives be mobilized for change? What strategies can disrupt and counter public forgetting? What role do the arts play in addressing the erasure of past violence from current memory and in creating new visions for future generations?


June 30, 2019, Publico: La Generación de la Posmemoria – Marianne Hirsch: “La revisión del pasado nos permite un futuro más justo, by Carolina Espinoza
June 27, 2019, El Pais: “Las artistas se niegan a perder la memoria de las mujeres“, by Peio H. Riaño

Silvina der Meguerditchian is a multimedia visual artist from Buenos Aires based in Berlin. The granddaughter of Armenian immigrants, she explores issues like the burden of national identity and the role of minorities in society. Reconstruction of the past and the building of archives are a red thread in her artistic research. She is the Artistic Director of Houshamadyan, a project that reconstructs Ottoman Armenian town and village life. Her work has been shown in exhibitions worldwide, in venues like the Hamburger Bahnhof (2018) and the Venice Biennale (2015). Kalfayan Galleries in Athens represents her now. [//www.silvina-der-meguerditchian.de]

  • Objects that tell stories (2015), Series of 21 postcards to take away
  • 10 posters based on archival photography from Dilijan (2016)
  • The wishing tree (2018), Documentary, 34 mins.

Mirta Kupferminc is a multidisciplinary visual artist whose parents were Auschwitz survivor immigrants to Argentina. She is interested in the capacity of art to challenge universal narratives about identity, migration, human rights, and memory. In Buenos Aires, she designed the Memorial for the AMIA bombings in Plaza Lavalle and also founded and directs Laba-BA: a laboratory for Jewish Culture and Grafica Insurgente. An award-winning artist, she has shown work internationally, most recently at the Jewish Museum in Amsterdam (2019). www.mirtakupferminc.net

  • MIGRANTS (2019), adhesive vinyl
  • La Lengua Materna / Mother Tongue (2019), inkjet print, acrylic painting , gold leaf and fiber handwriting.
  • Sueño Azul / Blue dream (2019), inkjet print- acrylic paint
  • Temporal Space (2018), inkjet print- acrylic paint
  • En Camino (on the road) ( 2005), animated video, with Mariana Sosnowski.

Susan Meiselas is a documentary photographer in New York. A Magnum Photos member, she covers human rights violations in Latin America, Kurdistan and elsewhere. She has edited five collections and authored five books, notably Nicaragua (1981), and most recently A Room of Their Own (2017). She has also co-directed two films, Living at Risk (1985) and Pictures from a Revolution (1991). A survey of her work, Mediations, recently toured the Fundació Antoni Tàpies, Jeu de Paume, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and received the Deutsche Borse award for 2019. [www.susanmeiselas.com]

  • Excerpt from akaKurdistan (2008- present), Printed booklets
  • BLANK: An Attempt at a Conversation (2019) with Işın Önol
    Contributions by: Bilal (Nusaybin); Zarife Bitim, Leyla Demir, Nejbir Erkol, Elif Kaya, and  Zeynep Öztap (Mardin)

Lorie Novak is an artist in New York. Supported by foundations like the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as residencies at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center and the MacDowell Colony, she is also Professor of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts and Associate Faculty at the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics at New York University. Her photographs appear in permanent museum collections across the U.S. and Europe. She has created many Web projects, including migraineregister.net, randominterference.net and collectedvisions.net, one of the earliest interactive photographic storytelling sites. [www.lorienovak.com]

  • Photographs from Photographic Interference (2011-present)
  • Random Interference  (2012-present), Web video installation

Deborah Willis is a photographer and leading historian of African American photography and culture based in New York. She is a University Professor and Chair of the Department of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. A Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellow, Professor Willis received the NAACP Image Award in 2014 for her co-authored book Envisioning Emancipation (2012); she is also the author of numerous other books including Posing Beauty (2009). Her art has been shown across the U.S., and she has curated exhibitions on subjects ranging from Hurricane Katrina to African American family life. [//debwillisphoto.com]

  • Melissa’s Closets, Rome (2019), Four photographs.

© Exhibition images by Silvina Der Meguerditchian

Roundtables connected to the companion exhibition: Women Mobilizing Memory in Arts of Intervention

Roundtable 3: Women Mobilizing Memory in Arts of Intervention
Chair: Patrizia Violi (Università di Bologna)
1. Silvina Der Meguerditchian (visual artist; Berlin) Treasures: How an Inconspicuous Manuscript Became the Heart of an Installation in the 56. Venice Biennial
2. Sibel Irzik (Sabancı University) Remembering ‘Possibility’: Postmemory and Apocalyptic Hope in Recent Turkish Coup Narratives
3. Nicole Gervasio (Brown University) Siting Absence: Feminist Photography, State Violence and the Limits of Representation
4. Laura Wexler (Yale University) and Lorie Novak (NYU) Instilling Interference
5. Hülya Adak (Sabancı University & Freie Universitaet Berlin) Women in Mourning Impeding Gendered Memories of a Genocidal Past

Roundtable 9: Women Mobilizing Memory in Performances of Protest
Chair: Leo Spitzer (Dartmouth College)
1.  Işın Önol (Montclair State University) Blank: an Attempt at a Conversation” (with Susan Meiselas)
2. María Soledad Falabella Luco (University of Chile) Hilando en la Memoria: Weaving Songs of Resistance in Contemporary Mapuche Political Cultural Activism
3. Ayse Gul Altinay (Sabancı University) Curious Steps: Mobilizing Memory Through Collective Walking and Storytelling in Istanbul
4. Deborah Willis (NYU) Women Artists Re-Historicizing Visual Memories

Special Session 3: Mobilizing Memory, Artistic Practice (conversation)
Marianne Hirsch (Columbia University) & Mirta Kupferminc (Visual Artist, Buenos Aires)

Graphic design by Melis Bagatir