In 2017, Gabrielle joined the International Center of Photography as the inaugural Postdoctoral Fellow in Visual Culture. There she curated two groundbreaking events, making new spaces for dialogue around what’s at stake at the intersection of community and visual culture.
“Community” is a potent, yet overused word, meaning dramatically different things to different people. Similarly, it can be hard to see the extent to which visual culture — the media, images, art, and memes around us — is the way we know our “communities,” and how that visual work might play a creative and productive role in social change.
“Working with People” and “What’s at Stake?” brought participants together two times in different contexts to engage deeply with each others practices and perspectives. The events focused on the intersection of visual culture and the complex and contradictory notions of community. These conversations with artists, community organizers, cultural organizations, public agencies, and the general public explored how visual culture plays a role in defining community, helping community members to understand themselves and define or redefine who is included or excluded from “community.” In lively and wide-ranging conversations, these days posed probing questions about the role of visual cultural prace in the everyday life of communities.
Working with People: Visual Culture & Social Justice, a day of dialogue, examination of visual culture, and discussion of how we use photographs to help us better understand the nature of community. At the ICP Museum, June 12, 2017, curated by Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani.
What’s at Stake: Community & Visual Culture, a public symposium turning the form on its head, engaging dialogue, participation and a deep reckoning of what’s at stake. At the New School, October 6, 2017, curated by Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani.
Speakers, facilitators, and participating organizations included: Nicholas Mirzoeff, Ruth Sergel, Stephanie Dinkins, Chinatown Art Brigade, The Point, the NYC Commission on Human Rights, Kemi Ilesanmi, the Laundromat Project, Emily Raboteau, Laura Y. Liu, Erin Barnett, Kristen Lubben, Danielle Jackson, Quito Ziegler, Bayeté Ross Smith, Amin Husain, Nitasha Dhillon, Adam Melaney, Shana Agid, and Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani.