The Curators of Ciudades Miradas
PHmuseum spoke with the curatorial team of Ciudades Miradas about the exhibition and the aims of this first edition.
Firstly, tell us how Ciudades Miradas, the collaborative project between Ananké Asseff
and PHmuseum, arose.
Ananke Asseff - For some time now I have wanted to create a space of meeting and reflection upon photography, and I also had the intention of doing something together with PHmuseum. As a visual artist who mainly develops her work in the photography field, PHmuseum’s proposal brought me some fresh air; a very precious thing for me. At the request of Panal 361 for an exhibition project, I then invited PHmuseum to be part of the first edition of Ciudades Miradas, developing a collaborative curatorship, on the basis of their criteria. Ciudades Miradas takes the dialogue as its axis, in all senses, and it is characterized by two cities in order to make possible the reflection on contemporary photography from different gazes and scenarios, and from different points of view of all those involved who participate and generate its construction.
Besides being a collective curatorship, Ciudades Miradas is an exhibition that develops a dialogue between photographers who live or work in Buenos Aires and London. How does each of the photographers presented in this exhibition contribute to this dialogue?
Ignacio Colo - Ciudades Miradas exhibition is a space that aims to explore this dialogue at different levels: the collaborative dialogue between the curators; the dialogue between PHmuseum’s virtual world and Panal 361′s real world; the reflexive dialogue in the spaces of debate; the dialogue between the creative scenes of Buenos Aires and London; and the dialogue between the authors and their works. In that sense, this exhibition poses more questions than answers: is there a real exchange between two photographic scenes so geographically distant? We believe there is a way of communication between the works: from Alejandro Chaskielberg and Jason Evan’s chromatic spectrum, to the proximity to the subjects presented by Liz Hingley and Alessandra Sanguinetti, and the documentary and authorial proposals of Santiago Hafford and Laura Pannack. However, each photographer coincides in this show from a different route: photojournalism, documentary photography, the art world, Europe, Latin America, the countryside, the city. That is the diversity we believe enriches the dialogue and increases the possibilities of photography as a language.
The 6 featured authors analyze from different places, our contemporary society through photography. What is the reflection of Ciudades Miradas in that sense?
Nicolas Janowski - Regardless of the body of work they develop, each author is deeply related to the space in which he or she develops that work. Even if in some cases it is less tangible, these authors are linked to the photographic scene they belong to: Buenos Aires and London respectively. The process of selection of the authors was long, and very interesting; it affected us as a curatorial team with ideas often related, but sometimes not. Furthermore, talking specifically about the selection of the authors, we tried to show the various areas in which contemporary photographers from these two places move. We tried to present proposals related both to conceptual photography and what we usually call the “new documentary.”
It is a time where photography constantly invites its own analysis and questioning of the media. What place does Ciudades Miradas occupy in that context?
Ananke Asseff - I think photography gives this space to reflection of the media because of its own nature; it is part of its richness. Ciudades Miradas aims to achieve a dynamic that gives visibility to various realities, influences, and quests, through photography exhibitions. Many of the different topics of discussion offer answers, but also more and better questions. Thinking from, and upon, photography.
What do you want the audience to take from Ciudades Miradas?
Nicolas Janowski - The main thing would be the joy of seeing 6 authors working at a very high level, who beyond this specific moment in their careers, have solid bodies of work. Secondly and more generally, we want the whole meeting to be a contribution to start thinking about the new context of Argentinian photography. Relating to new local and international actors is not only necessary but healthy for the local scene, and it also breaks with the traditional and endogamic paradigm, a characteristic of the Argentinian photography framework.
PHmuseum is the first online museum dedicated to photography, but more and more it is developing concrete actions, taking the work of members of the community to events. In what ways do you think one space feeds the other? How has this worked with Ciudades Miradas?
Giuseppe Oliverio - One of our main interests has always been the relationship between the virtual and the real world. That is why since 2012 we have been developing projects related to this, such as our journeys with the Museum Van during which we connect personally with the photography community of different countries, replicating in some way what PHmuseum does online every day. Over the years, these comings and goings between the online and the offline have intensified and we have started, for example, to curate physical exhibitions of photographers from our community, and propose them for calls, prizes, scholarships, and collaborations with photography festivals. This exhibition is one more opportunity in which we want to relate these two worlds. Our intention is to invite the public to benefit from photography in a physical space curated specifically with work of photographers from our community, so they can learn about the universe of stories and authors on our platform, and more generally, about the world of contemporary photography.
In the context of the opening this Saturday October 10th, there will be a presentation by PHmuseum. Tell us what it will be about…
Giuseppe Oliverio - Firstly, we want to share with the public the most interesting topics presented throughout the event: the intention behind the show, the curatorial criteria that inspires us, and the ideas we have developed for the realization of an exhibition of this kind. Also, we will exclusively present the new PHmuseum platform, to be launched in December, which aims to connect photographers from our network with the main international media, facilitating the circulation of the visual stories that are a part of the PHmuseum community.
Ciudades Miradas is a collective curatorial project between PHmuseum Curators - Giuseppe Oliverio, Ignacio Coló, and Nicolás Janowski - and Argentine photographer Ananké Asseff. The exhibition opened its doors on October 10th at Panal 361, Buenos Aires and featured the work of six recognized photographers from Buenos Aires and London, namely Alessandra Sanguinetti, Alejandro Chaskielberg, and Santiago Hafford (Argentina); and Laura Pannack, Jason Evans, and Liz Hingley (England). Ciudades Miradas also counted with a presentation by PHmuseum Ceo and founder Giuseppe Oliverio, and a cicle of roundtables. Learn more about Ciudades Miradas at the official website.