White Blind Spot
A two-day public programme curated by Maribel Sobreira and Gabriela Salazar
The city I inhabit also inhabits me. WHITE BLIND SPOT is a two-day programme to turn image, time, certainties and urban narratives upside down.
WHITE BLIND SPOT is a workshop that questions colonial narratives in the city of Lisbon, invoking the hidden side and the silencing of other bodies and ways of living. We will use an inverted image device to build together tools that allow us a more balanced reading of the constitution of public space. How do our individual and collective narratives connect? Let us together turn the world and our blind spots inside out.
In the various intersectional social empowerment movements, which include anti-racist as well as feminist or LGBTQ+ movements, we observe a strong resistance from privileged and normative high-challenging subjects, who in an attempt to maintain the established narrative, devalue the experience of others.
This activity focuses on this place of friction where the two perspectives are in tension, opening the space for a wider awareness of the constituent elements of a city, be it global or local, demonstrating that they are not neutral.
18.00 – 19.30
Talk open to the public
A conversation between Anne Kockelkorn, Ana Rita Alves and Ana Sophie Salazar, where we will talk about access to public space and how both economic and perceptual mechanisms have constructed the canon of architecture, excluding and erasing other narratives that influence the way we see and feel public space.
15.00 – 18.00
We will use footage from a roaming darkroom, paper, pens and timelines, to together dismantle ideas and perspectives that have been transmitted to us by the city and how our individual history and memory of a place is influenced by the political narrative inscribed in the streets we inhabit.
Let's put our certainties on hold and put them upside down and discover the “blind spot” they hide. Have you ever wondered why you love a street, a statue or a garden so much? Which places hold our affection? Are they childhood memories? History lessons? This is an invitation for us to see which city also inhabits us.
Ana Sophie Salazar (b. 1990) is a curator, writer and co-founder of the Museum for the Displaced, a cultural and social para-institution that addresses issues in the realm of forced migration, displacement and statelessness. Through undisciplined explorations of nomadic, poly-linguistic and cross-cultural subjectivities, her work offers inventive ways of questioning current geopolitical mappings. From 2016 to 2020, she was Assistant Curator of Exhibitions at the NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore. Ana holds an MA in Curatorial Practices from the School of Visual Arts, New York, and a degree in Piano from the Lisbon School of Music (Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa). She participated in the Shanghai Curators Lab (2018), the Project Anywhere mentorship programme (2020-21), and is currently curator-in-residence (2021-22) at Künstlerhaus Schloss Balmoral, Germany.
Maribel Mendes Sobreira is an architect, curator and researcher, a PhD student in Philosophy at the School of Arts and Humanities (Faculdade de Letras) of the University of Lisbon (FLUL) in Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art, and she was an FCT (Foundation for Science and Technology) grant holder from 2016 to 2020. She holds a Master's degree in Philosophy from FLUL, she is also a PhD student in Philosophy at FLUL in the field of Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art, and was an FCT scholarship holder from 2016 to 2020. Sobreira is a member of the Philosophy Centre of the University of Lisbon (CFUL) and of ISPA (International Society for the Philosophy of Architecture). She designs and runs activities to raise awareness of the arts and architecture, collaborating with Museu Coleção Berardo and maat at that level. She started her curatorial practice in 2019, with the project ARQUIVO EXQUIS, in Lisbon, and she co-founded ColectivoFACA – a curatorship and active citizenship project that questions the narratives of visual culture, not erasing history and intersecting the various narratives. She has published articles on architecture, urban heritage and art theory, noting, in particular: “Relation of Architecture and Philosophy in the tragedy of culture” (2018) and “Time of the shapeless” (2020).
Gabriela Salazar is an Ecuadorian and Portuguese architect and researcher, co-founder and director of the Frame Colectivo studio. She graduated from the Technical University of Berlin, Germany (2011), focusing on architectural theory as well as social and sustainable architecture. In 2013, she created Frame Colectivo with Agapi Dimitriadou. Art and science are influences in her practice, which explores urban interventions and collaborative design to create new systems of urban representation and negotiation. She speaks five languages: Spanish as her mother tongue, advanced English, advanced German, advanced Portuguese and fluent French. She plays football regularly and is an advocate for maintaining safe spaces for the LGBTQPIA+ community.
Ana Rita Alves is an anthropologist and PhD student at the Centre for Social Studies of the University of Coimbra (CES-UC). She was a grantee of the Foundation for Science and Technology (Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia - FCT) and more recently one of the 2020-2021 Black Studies Dissertation Scholar at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her work focuses on the critical analysis of the intersection between institutional racism, territory and housing, materialising so far in a number of publications, papers and collaborations. She has been part of the team of several research projects, including “ ‘Race’ and Africa in Portugal: a study on History textbooks” (FCT, 2010-2011), “The fight against racism in Portugal: an analysis of public policies and anti-discrimination legislation” (FCT, 2016-2020) and “African descendants in Portugal: sociability, representations and socio-political and cultural dynamics. A study in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area” (FCT, 2019-2021). She is co-founder of “CHÃO - Urban Ethnography Workshop” which, together with the Social Development Association of Vale de Chícharos, has developed a social cartography and literacy classes and Portuguese as a non-native language in the Bairro da Jamaica neighbourhood. She has collaborated, in solidarity, with collectives and residents of self-produced and re-housing neighbourhoods, repositories par excellence of institutional violence.
Anne Kockelkorn is an architectural historian focused on the intersections between design, territorial politics and processes of subjectivation. Her forthcoming monograph The Social Condenser II investigates the representation and production of large-scale housing complexes in France before and after the neoliberal reforms of 1977, for which she won the ETH Silver Medal for outstanding doctoral theses in 2018. She is currently an assistant professor of Dwelling at TU Delft; previously she was co-director of the MAS program in History and Theory of Architecture at ETH Zurich. Her most recent book is Productive Universals–Specific Situations. Critical Engagements in Art, Architecture, and Urbanism (Berlin: Sternberg Press, 2019, co-edited with Nina Zschocke).