(Self) Representation, otherness and power

Coordinated by Antonio Prieto-Stambaugh and Milla Riggio

In the context of this working group, the issue of representation shall be discussed in relation to specific performative practices, both in the spheres of hegemonic power and subaltern resistance. We invite participants to consider the double-edged aspect of representation: on the one hand, as a colonial instrument designed to invent and classify "the other", and also as a vehicle of empowerment for subaltern groups and subjects. In the latter sense, self-representation is often conceived as a way of achieving political and cultural representation within a dominant society. But we might then interrogate to what extent, for example, indigenous people are able to appropriate technologies of representation, and how they can (if at all) control the reception others have of their work.

Acknowledging the Encuentro's main topics, we suggest that our discussion consider how the struggle for indigenous self-representation may lead to social agency and empowerment, the implications it has within the framing of an "intangible heritage", as well as the pressure art markets exert over community-based representations.

We encourage a discussion that brings in not only examples from indigenous artists and groups, but also of other ethnic/racial communities, as well as of lesbian or/and gay communities.

Further routes of interrogation may include:
- How do subaltern representations unsettle stereotypes that the dominant society may have concerning disenfranchised peoples? Are new stereotypes put into circulation?
- In light of transnational migration, the hybridization of identities and cross-cultural contacts, to what extent are indigenous people concerned with producing representations linked with their community "roots"?
- What modes of analysis may be suggested for "traditional" or community-based representations, vis à vis the representations produced by individual artists from those communities who are conversant with postmodern, postcolonial or/and queer discourses, and work with conceptual performance?


Jordan Pollock, Marcelo Kraiser, Mila Aponte-González, John R. Beverley, Reona Brass, Jennifer Cayer, German García, Luiselle Rivera, Milla Riggio, Sarah Curran, Marylin Rodríguez, Alyssa McClorey, Laura Gutiérrez, Annie Baillargeon, Luis A. López Espinoza, Luiz Guilherme Veiga de Almeida, Lucía Herrera, Benjamín Jacanamijoy Tisoy, Maite Málaga-Iguiniz, Valeria R McFarren, Yumari Y O'koyoaré.