Drawing Together: Solidarities, Pictures, and Politics

The graduate students in the Visual and Cultural Studies Program at the University of Rochester invite you all to join us for the 10th Visual and Cultural Studies Graduate Conference, Drawing Together: Solidarities, Pictures, and Politics.

“Solidarity” recalls notions of inclusivity, activism, and movement. Adopted from the French solidarité in the early 19th century, the word continues to indicate the communal union of interests or aspirations, as well as collective responsibility. From its use by labor unions to its association with socialism and communism, solidarity has historically been made to bear a sense of the political. We recognize in the powerful images of recent events a renewed need to assess strategies of togetherness, both historical and contemporary. We propose this topic with the aim of critically engaging pictures and their power to mobilize both differences and commonalities. Can we envision solidarity outside the pursuit of common political aims? Can we find common ground amidst different struggles?

Friday, April 17 – Goergen Hall 101, Sloan Auditorium

4:00 PM – Keynote Address
Jared Sexton, Associate Professor of African American Studies and Film & Media Studies and Director of African American Studies at the University of California, Irvine
A Violence Indifferent to Hope: On an Image from Black Lives Matter

5:30 PM – Panel 1: Labor and Self-Determination

Moderator: Jennifer Creech, Assistant Professor of German

Ali Feser, University of Chicago
“It was a family”: Picturing Corporate Kinship at Eastman-Kodak
Tanya Goldman, New York University
“Give Us Health! Give Us Work! Give Us Life!:” Men and Dust, Labor Advocacy, and Nontheatrical Film Distribution, 1939-1942
Kasia Kieca, Binghamton University
Imaging Industry: Solidarity, Alienation, and Contingency in Lewis Hine’s Men at Work (1932)

7:30 PM – Opening Reception, Hartnett Gallery

Saturday, April 18 – LeChase Hall, Genrich-Rusling Room

9:30 AM – Breakfast and Coffee

10:00 AM – Panel 2: Collectivity and Collaboration 

Moderator: A. Joan Saab, Professor of Art History/Visual and Cultural Studies, Chair of Department of Art and Art History

Erin McClenathan, University of Georgia
Hans Richter’s Rhythmus Films in G: the Collective Cinematographic
Kyle C. Frisina, University of Michigan
A Revolutionary Embrace: Affective Visuality in 1965 Montgomery

12:00 PM – Lunch

1:30 PM – Panel 3: Communities and Projections 

Moderator: Kristin Doughty, Assistant Professor of Anthropology

Mai Corlin Bagger-Petersen, Aarhus University
The Bishan Commune – Unfolding Utopian Imaginaries
Ellyn Walker, Queen’s University
Alliance as Curatorial Subject and Decolonial Tool
Simon A. Dougherty, A.C.U. Institute for Social Justice
Adjusting Concepts and Practices of Solidarity through the Lens of “Milpirri”

3:30 PM – Coffee and Snack Break

4:00 PM – Panel 4: Reconsidering Solidarity 

Moderator: Rachel Haidu, Associate Professor of Art History and Director of Visual and Cultural Studies

Janet Zandy, Rochester Institute of Technology
Resistance to Solidarity? or Why Hansel Mieth and Marion Palfi Photographs Are Not in the Canon
James Simons, University of Massachusetts Boston
Who Owns Hip Hop?: Racial Tensions Inside and Outside of Hip-Hop Culture

6:30 PM – Closing Celebration