Survey Style: Landscape photography across the globe

Session Convenors

Erin Hyde Nolan, Maine College of Art

Sophie Junge, University of Zurich

Session Abstract

In the second half of the 19th century, photographic processes and the popularity of landscape representations evolved simultaneously. It is, therefore, not surprising that a shared pictorial language used for topographical views developed during this time period. Such practices not only shaped Euro-American territorial expansion, but also legitimated non-Western politics in the name of (proto-)national identity (Kelsey, 2007). As an international photographic survey movement, this trend gestured in many directions. It visualised the 19th-century desire to control, own, map as well as render and reproduce both the diversity and familiarity of the landscape (Edwards, 2012). Recent scholarship has treated survey images as cultural ‘portraits’, which embody political ideologies and act as agents of power (Smith, 2009; Mitchell 1994). In light of recent debates regarding travel bans, the tenets of citizenship and migration, and the context, content and collection of such projects warrants renewed attention, especially their status as relics of the colonial enterprise.

This session seeks to expand the field of landscape photography and understand how the temporal and historical dynamics of place materialise through survey documentation. How do photographic conceptualisations of landscape from different locations relate to one another? By what means were scientific discourses on geography and anthropology entwined with imperialist ideologies, and in what ways do they manifest in photographs, exhibitions and archives? How do land surveys relate to conventions of portraiture, and fashion both individual and collective selfhood? Panelists should offer a fresh approach to the material, applying transnational methodologies to landscape photography from across the globe.

To offer a paper
Please email your paper proposal direct to the session convenors, details above.

Provide a title and abstract (250 words maximum) for a 25-minute paper (unless otherwise specified), your name and institutional affiliation (if any).

Please make sure the title is concise and reflects the contents of the paper because it will appear online, in social media and in the printed programme.

You should receive an acknowledgement of receipt of your submission within two weeks from the session convenors.

Deadline for submissions: Monday 5 November 2018

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