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Where We Meet

Dr Marina Velez Vago will be presenting a paper at the upcoming conference ‘Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay’, at the University of Cambridge on the 28th January.

You are welcome to join in online:


Where We Meet: mapping out the diaspora through photography


From keeping framed pictures of family members who have emigrated, to images shared on social media, photography offers a means to actualise emotional kin relations and opportunities for the family who stayed and those who migrated to map out cartographies of experiences among the diaspora. In my work, the images create atmospheres of disorientation, mixing visual clues, where place is not easily recognisable, addressing the different layers of identity that those who stayed have to negotiate when they see an image of those who left, in their new environment.

In this paper I will address photography as an aesthetic means of communication, which in its temporal-atemporal plasticity offers ways of keeping record of space, time and movement of people through which to explore the concepts of home, identity and belonging as multiple and multi-layered.

Drawing from artists such as Mohini Chandra and Rineke Djikstra, as well as my own practice, I will explore the traffic between visual narrative and imagination and I will investigate how contemporary artistic practices, articulated through photography, can help to understand the complexities of emotions and narratives of exploration, assimilation and longing in migrant communities.


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