press release

The Image of War is an exhibition about violence in images. It comes from questions around their production, dissemination and agency. Considering the relationship between those who depict, those who are depicted, and those who see what’s depicted, what interests us is the way people take part in these scenes. The point is that images that make violence visible work on an intricate ethical, moral and political wavelength that requires reflection. Reflecting on this type of image doesn’t dispute the necessity of creating them. It suggests rather that a crucial political project is finding ways to see violence.

The exhibition turns to artworks that wrestle with questions of the image while relating to the violence of war. Crucial here is that what we might call "mediality" comes in to view. Here we not only face something that shows but are made aware of what and how it shows as image. To encounter and get a sense of mediality allows for an awareness of not only the events depicted but also the very means of making visible. Recall what Debord did in cinema, or what Brecht did with gestural techniques in theatre. An audience wasn’t wholly engrossed in the fiction of a play but rather made aware of the mediality of theatre.

We see more and more images in higher and higher resolution yet have remained the same witnesses to them as at the advent of photography. If mediality lets us in on the processes of making visible as such it is made known through a kind of enactment of the image. What it then means to encounter an image of violence doesn’t stop at the level of objectification or representation. We are instead engaged to understand a double mode of transmission; on the one hand the demonstrative, what is capable of being shown; and on the other hand the unspeakable, the inaccessible.

Talks include speakers: Laura Poitras, Mari Bastashevski, Adam Kleinman, Nivette Dawod, Niclas Hammarström, Johanne Hildebrandt, Helen Frowe and Cecilia Sjöholm.

The exhibition includes work by: Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Mari Bastashevski, Broomberg & Chanarin, David Claerbout, Phil Collins, Bracha L. Ettinger, Iman Issa, Alfredo Jaar, Gavin Jantjes, Gülsün Karamustafa, Gerhard Nordström, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Eva Löfdahl, Rabih Mroué, Trevor Paglen, Mykola Ridnyi, Michael Rakowitz, Martha Rosler, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Gilles Saussier, Susan Schuppli, Allan Sekula, IndrėŠerpytytė, John Smith, Sean Snyder, The Atlas Group and Maximilien Van Aertryck & Axel Danielson. Screenings with: Marwa Arsanios, Harun Farocki, Jumana Manna & Sille Storihle, Trinh T. Minh-ha and Oraib Toukan. Curated by Theodor Ringborg.

The Image of War - Conference, November 24–25, takes place in the exhibition and includes the artists Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Susan Schuppliand Gilles Saussier alongside director of Reporters without Borders Jonathan Lundqvist, theatre director Ellen Nyman, head of Amnesty’s crisis response team Tirana Hassan, media professor Kari Andén-Papadopoulos, peace and conflict researcher Johanna Mannergren Selimovic, photojournalist Paul Hansen, poet Azita Ghahreman and curator Theodor Ringborg.

A poetry anthology with work by amongst other Mahmoud Darwish, Warsan Shire, Sohrab Rahimi and Inshah Malik, edited by Raqs Media Collective and Theodor Ringborg accompanies the exhibition.