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Alfredo Jaar: The Politics of Images

January 23 – April 14, 2013
University Gallery, Ryerson Image Centre
Curator: Dr. Gaelle Morel

Focusing on human rights, the Chilean-born, New York-based artist addresses political concerns and the relationship between ethics and aesthetics. His œuvre highlights ignored contemporary tragedies, such as genocides, epidemics and famines, and promotes cultural change.

In his works Searching for Africa in Life (1996) and From Time to Time (2006), Alfredo Jaar displays covers of news magazines to analyze the lack of visibility and the visual clichés about Africa disseminated in Western culture.

The artist’s three-channel video We Wish to Inform You That We Didn’t Know (2010), his most recent project on the genocide in Rwanda, acts as an epilogue to The Rwanda Project, 1994-2000, a series of twenty-five artworks developed to critique the world’s indifference and inaction to this mass murder.

Alfredo Jaar: The Politics of Images is made possible with the generous support of the artist.




Event(s):

Exhibition Tour

Doina Popescu and Dr. Gaelle Morel
Wednesday, January 30
6:00 PM

Exhibition Tour
Doina Popescu and Dr. Gaelle Morel
Wednesday, March 27
6:00 PM

Artist Lecture
Alfredo Jaar
Wednesday, October 2
7:30 PM
350 Victoria Street, LIB-72

Exhibition Tours
Daily 2:30 PM

All events take place at the Ryerson Image Centre, unless otherwise noted

Photographs of portraits hanging from a clothes line
Fig. 1

Alfredo Jaar, We Wish to Inform You That We Didn’t Know (detail), 2010. Three-channel video installation and audio. Courtesy of the artist

Artist and Curator Bios

Alfredo Jaar
Artist

Alfredo Jaar (b. 1956) is a Chilean artist, architect, and filmmaker who presently lives and works in New York. His oeuvre is unquestionably politically motivated, often exploring the very notions of politics, ethics, and representation, and complex issues such as genocide, political corruption, humanitarian crises, and the relationship between geography, power, and exploitation. Alfredo Jaar is a devoted educator, and has made approximately sixty public interventions in his career.

Dr. Gaelle Morel
Curator

Dr. Gaelle Morel is curator of the exhibition and contributor to the book. Morel is an art historian and Exhibitions Curator at the Ryerson Image Centre, Toronto, Canada. She received her PhD in the History of Contemporary Art from Universite Paris 1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, France. Her research and recent work deal with the figure of the artist as author in French contemporary photography. She also works on the artistic and cultural recognition of the medium in the United States in the 1930s. She was, until 2013, a member of the board of the Societe francaise de photographie, and a member of the editorial committee of Etudes photographiques, a bilingual peer reviewed journal on the history of photography. She edited Les Derniers Tableaux. Photojournalisme et art contemporain (Paris: Editions des Archives Contemporaines, 2008) and co-wrote with Thierry Gervais La Photographie published by Editions Larousse in France (2008, 2011). She was a recipient of a Terra Foundation for American Art Travel Grant in 2007, for her work on the American art dealer Julien Levy who closely worked with Berenice Abbott in the 1920s and 1930s.

Installation Shots

Dozens of tiny colourful photographs fill a large wall
Fig. 1

Alfredo Jaar: The Politics of Images (installation view), 2014 © Jackson Klie, Ryerson Image Centre

Dozens of tiny colourful photographs fill a large wall
Fig. 2

Alfredo Jaar: The Politics of Images (installation view), 2014 © Jackson Klie, Ryerson Image Centre

Three identical screens show Bill Clinton standing at a podium in front of American flags
Fig. 3

Alfredo Jaar: The Politics of Images (installation view), 2014 © Jackson Klie, Ryerson Image Centre