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Unpacking and Animating the Archive: Some reflections on ways of working with Tibet photographs

January 05 2023 - Lecture

Conférence de Clare Harris FBA

The Chikyak Khenpo at his residence, Lhasa, 17th May 1921. Glass plate negative. Photographer: RabdenLepcha/Charles Bell. Pitt Rivers Museum accession number: 1998.285.100.1

De 17h30 à 19h

(Format hybride, informations de connexion fournies ultérieurement sur

Photographs famously contain an excess of information. Once archived in museums, libraries and other institutions, their potential to act as sources for all kinds of research far exceeds the intentions of their creators or the contexts in which they were originally produced. In the case of the photographic imaging of Tibet, archives around the world are now home to vast quantities of prints and negatives that document a crucial period in Tibet’s history from the midnineteenth to the midtwentieth century. Each of those thousands of photographic objects overflows with potential to reconstruct and revisit many aspects of the past and to activate their resonance in the present but until relatively recently, the value and importance of that archival excess has often been overlooked. In this talk, Clare Harris will explore some of the concepts and methods that she has worked with since 2003, when the first of her projects engaging with historic photographs of Tibet appeared in the form of the Pitt Rivers Museum exhibition ‘Seeing Lhasa’. Since then, she has created digital projects, published several books, collaborated with Tibetan artists, photographers and researchers and continued to unpack the contents of photographic archives with the hope of making them more « knowable and visible » (Bhabha) to all who seek to reanimate Tibet’s history and knowledge.

Cycle de conférences / Archives photographiques du monde tibétain pour la recherche en sciences humaines

Dans le cadre de lexposition
Larmée tibétaine en vues : photographies historiques (18951959)
Informations sur lexposition :