23 Mar - 04 May 2020

Looking East: Photography in Central and Eastern Europe in the 1930s–90s

All activities at The Photographers’ Gallery are suspended in the interests of public health and safety. Register your interest and we’ll let you know if we’re able to reformat/reschedule this course. Please see our FAQ page for up-to-date information on our temporary closure.

Gain deeper insight into post-war photography from Central and Eastern Europe in this six-week course

How can photography build new and different understandings of Central and Eastern Europe? Running in conjunction with Jan Svoboda: Against the Light, this six-week course addresses thematic issues in these regions from the 1930s to the 1990s. Starting with brief incursions into modernism, it aims to provide a more inclusive perspective on the history of photography that contrast with Western-centred narratives. The course will touch upon lesser-known practitioners, and neglected chapters such as socialist cosmopolitanism, experimental and conceptual approaches, and the East as a liminal zone. Among topics discussed are the expansion of subcultural genres such as punk and rave during the "transition" years of the nineties, new approaches to documentary, and current issues pertaining to migration, ostalgie, class, gender, race, ethnicity and religion. 

Led by researcher Ileana L. Selejan.


Ileana L. Selejan is a Research Associate in the Department of Anthropology at UCL, where she is a part of the European Research Council (ERC) funded project, "Citizens of Photography: The Camera and the Political Imagination," and an Associate Lecturer at Central Saint Martins, UAL. She was previously the Linda Wyatt Gruber ’66 Curatorial Fellow in Photography at The Davis Museum at Wellesley College where she curated the exhibition "Charlotte Brooks at LOOK: 1951-1971". She received her PhD in Art History from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. As an adjunct instructor, she taught in the Photography and Imaging Department at Tisch School of the Arts, and in the Art History Department at NYU, at the Parsons School of Design, and in the Fine Arts Department at West University, Timisoara, Romania.

Image: Costică Acsinte, [Portrait from] Slobozia, Romania, circa 1930-1950, courtesy of the Costică Acsinte Archive 

£200/£180 members & concessions. Ticket holders are able to access the gallery exhibitions on each day of the course.

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