The project 'Cold War Camera' (renamed 'FOTOFRÍA' for Spanish-speaking audiences) is one of the outcomes of the AHRC-funded network grant 'Photography and the Transnational Politics of Affect', led by late Durham Professor Andrea Noble (School of Modern Languages and Cultures). The associated international symposium is meant to honour the work of our distinguished colleague.
The project explores the emotional power of photography to prompt political action and aims to increase and deepen public understandings of the 'Latin American Cold War' through the photographic image. This project's premise is that photography had and still has a key role in the cultural politics of the transnational conflict: through state surveillance operations; through deployment in resistance to state-sponsored terrorism; and by its role in processes of transitional justice and commemoration.
This ongoing project started with a series of workshops with academics and photographers, led by Professor Noble until her passing in Mexico City in May 2017. Recent outcomes include a two-day international symposium in memory of Andrea Noble on September 26-27, 2018 and a photographic exhibition. Both events were held at the prestigious Centro de la Imagen in central Mexico City. The Symposium included presentations by academics and practitioners from Chile, Mexico and the USA. The exhibition, entitled 'Visualidades en conflicto' ('Visualities in Conflict'), is the culmination of the project. It showcases new work by young photographers Zahara Gómez (Spain/Argentina, 1983), Juan Orrantia (Colombia, 1975) and Mauricio Palos (Mexico, 1981) specially commissioned for this exhibition. Their work is the result of archival research, workshops and fieldwork in Argentina, Guatemala, Colombia and Mexico between 2017 and 2018. This new work is shown alongside a project by Mexican photographer Rodrigo Morales, focusing on movements of emancipation and resistance against Latin American dictatorships.
The exhibition opened on October 25, 2018, and will be on until late January 2019. For more information visit the Centro de la Imagen website. The exhibition and the Symposium are sponsored by the AHRC, Santander, Durham University, the Centro de la Imagen and Mexico government's Secretariat of Culture.