Curated by Renée Mussai (Senior Curator and Head of Archive & Research at Autograph ABP) this exhibition centres on the visual presence of black figures in Victorian Britain. Through the prism of studio photography, the exhibition explores politics of subjectivity, representation and agency, and continues Autograph ABP’s critical mission of annotating the cultural histories of photography by addressing its ‘missing chapters’, in tandem with VIAD’s focus on historical redress within photographic archives and the role of positionalities in their production and reception.
Black Chronicles IV will also feature the sound-image installation The African Choir 1891 Re-Imagined (songs composed by Phillip Miller & Thuthuka Sibisi) and a special display of The Paris Albums 1900, with more than 200 photographic reproductions from W.E.B. Du Bois’s groundbreaking exhibit at the 1900 Paris Exposition.
Using the exhibition and photographic portraiture as a departure point, a VIAD organised conference will build upon a critical rethinking of curatorial practice, as traditionally bound to a colonial logic of collection, arrangement, ‘safe-keeping’ and display.