Past Event

Thinking Algeria at 60: Images from a Revolution

November 1, 2022 - November 10, 2022
4:30 PM - 9:00 PM
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Photography exhibits, film screenings, and symposia

During the colonial era, photography and visual production in Algeria was an overwhelmingly French undertaking. From Orientalists to scientists and experts, to tourists from the métropole, the colonial gaze shaped the visual perception of land and people for a century-and-a-half. The War of Liberation of 1954-1962 brought a major shift, as Algerian nationalists appropriated and reversed the power of photography, using images to galvanize domestic and international support. Algeria at 60: Images from a Revolution explores the wide-ranging use of photography and other images during and since the Algerian revolution, considering how successive re-imaginings of modern Algeria have taken shape in visual culture.

This hybrid symposium centers on an exhibit of wartime photographs by Mohamed Kouaci never previously shown outside Algeria. Kouaci’s arresting photographs are placed in dialogue with moving images in a film program showcasing rare and archival films made during the war of independence. Both photography exhibit and film series are complemented by discussions by leading scholars, artists, writers and actors of Algerian history. These speakers will think from and towards images, engaging with Algeria as a site of visual culture from the early days of the Revolution to the Hirak, the citizen protest movement that is unfolding today.

Free and open to all.  RSVP required (see pages linked below)

Tuesday, November 1st - Thursday, November 10
Photography exhibit - Mohamed Kouaci: Vision(s) of Algeria
East Gallery, Maison Française, Buell Hall

Tuesday, November 1st, 5:00 PM–8:00 PM  
Thinking Algeria at 60: Images from a Revolution
Mohamed Kouaci Exhibition Opening and Panel Discussion on Traces of Memory: The War of Independence in Visual Culture
East Gallery, Maison Française, Buell Hall

Thursday, November 3rd - 12:00 PM-1:30 PM
Visual and Political Culture in Contemporary Algeria
Virtual Panel Discussion in French

Thursday, November 3rd - 2:00 PM-3:30 PM
Algerian Popular Politics from the War of Independence to the Hirak
Virtual Panel Discussion in English

These events are co-sponsored by the Columbia Maison Française and the Alliance Program.

Organizing Committee:

Shanny Peer, Director, Columbia Maison Française
Madeleine Dobie, Chair, Columbia Department of French
Emmanuel Kattan, Director, Alliance Program
Adel Ben Bella, Curator of the Mohamed Kouaci Exhibit, Doctoral Student at Brown University
Sophia Mo, Doctoral Student, Columbia Department of French
Fanny Guex, Associate Director, Columbia Maison Française
Clara Wilhelm, Acting Program Coordinator, Columbia Maison Française