Our of sight: picturing the unseen

June 12, 2019 – September 1, 2019
The Finnish Museum of Photography
Curator: Lexington Davis

Out of Sight: Picturing the Unseen highlights new work by four emerging interdisciplinary artists who question and explore the fraught relationship between visibility and the construction of “Otherness.” The exhibition asks who is unseen, particularly in the West, and considers how difference is confronted through forms of visual representation. It approaches the unseen as a process—an “unseeing”—in which certain groups of people are systematically erased, ignored, removed, and reimagined according to the needs of a dominant culture.

In their photographic and video works, Cihad Caner, Róisín White, Sinead Kennedy, and Agata Wieczorek examine how visibility is continually negotiated through discourse, folklore, governmental policies, and the production and consumption of goods. They mine local histories, draw from theoretical texts, and engage with diverse communities in order to examine how marginalization operates and persists. They locate those who are made or imagined to exist “out of sight,” and reveal how their subjects’ bodies emerge as sites where visibility can no longer be denied or suppressed. In their work, we see that “unseeing” is not only a reductive act—one of erasure—but is also productive, leading to the creation of myths, narratives, alternative communities, different temporalities, and physical structures of confinement and survival.

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