Welcome to a zine launch presenting the results of a research workshop, conceived by Kristina Stallvik (Alexander von Humboldt German chancellor fellow, hosted by Art Laboratory Berlin) and Li Yang (Alexander von Humboldt German chancellor fellow, hosted by alpha nova & galerie futura).
Since art historian James Elkins coined the term “visual culture” in 1972, the emerging interdisciplinary field has shed light on questions of the visual: how are images produced, circulated, and consumed? What is the relationship between visibility/invisibility and subjectivity? What are the social apparatuses that enable ways of seeing? Borrowing methodology from media studies, anthropology, art history, ecology, feminism, queer studies, postcolonial theory, and more, visual culture is an inherently hybrid pursuit. Visual content plays a central role in all aspects of our lives. Therefore, a focus on visual practice holds potential to efface the trap of epistemic boundaries – enabling an imaginative reconceptualization of both research approaches and dominant societal structures.
Under the auspices of the Alexander-von-Humboldt (AvH) German Chancellor Fellowship and organised by Art Laboratory Berlin und alpha nova & galeria futura, the collaborative project Exploring the Visual opens a critical dialogue on researching the visual within the fields of contemporary art, filmmaking, journalism, and independent publishing. Join a small cohort of AvH research fellows in celebrating the launch of their new zine publication, the result of a co-creative zine workshop exploring themes of the visual through diverse research perspectives on migration, ecology, motherhood, and more. Fellow and curator Li Yang will also give a tour of alpha nova’s current show I Made You to Find Me.
Kennith Rosario (he/him) is a journalist from India, currently working with taz, die tageszeitung as a German Chancellor Fellow and documenting stories of LGBTQ refugees in Germany. He writes on human rights, queerness, refugees, and cinema in India, Germany, and the UK. His current project is a journalistic extension of his academic research on queer refugees at the University of Cambridge, where he analyzed the unique ways in which queer asylum seekers experience persecution. Previously, he worked with The Hindu newspaper in India as a culture writer and film critic.
Lebogang Mokoena (they/ them) is an independent journalist and researcher. They have written for publications in South Africa and abroad such as The Journalist, Daily Vox, The Finnish Architectural Review, The Funambulist, Futuress, and CAC Brétigny’s Revue. Lebogang is a German Chancellor Fellow in the 2022-2023 cohort. Using decolonial theory and intersectionality, Lebogang explores how the news media in Germany and South Africa frame the representation of people in climate change news images. They focus on news images of recent flood events that happened in Germany (2021) and South Africa (2022).
Hana Peoples is a film curator and researcher from Seattle, Washington, USA. In 2019, she completed her MA in Cinema and Media Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is currently working in Berlin as a German Chancellor Fellow, examining the German film funding ecosystem and its effects on diversity, equity and inclusion in relation to audience participation and filmmaker resource accessibility. Her research host is German Films in Munich, the national information and advisory center for the promotion of German films worldwide. Prior to her fellowship, Hana worked as the Cinema Programmer for Northwest Film Forum in Seattle.
Li Yang (b. 1994, China, she/her) is a visiting curator and researcher at alpha nova & galerie futura. She is funded by The German Chancellor Fellowship 2022-2023 (Alexander von Humboldt Foundation). Her research and curatorial interests include feminist curating, motherhood in art, care, and Chinese feminist art. Her most recent articles will be published by Woman‘s Art Journal and Demeter Press.