within the process of curating and setting up the exhibition we, lann and ja’n, have been searching for visual and auditory hints to the traces and fractures of the dyke_transing of our perceptions; we have started to reflect upon our perceptions and our conventions in seeing and reading, listening and feeling photos and films, comics and podcasts, wordings and paintings. this text is one of our ways to interact.
our inter_actions are continuously resulting in new de_silencings and dis_ visualizations, we are re_locating the dyke_transing of selves and we are dyke_transing our re_locating inter_actions with each other, with others and with the artists. we are trying to reflect and discuss all this from a social positioning with white and ableistic privileges, and this perspective can be reflected upon but not overcome in our form of collaboration, in our ways to see and choose artistic productions. for us, dyke_transing productions and perceptions is not a general and neutral concept with regard to interdependent power relations; we thus do not understand the making of this exhibition as a form of dyke_transing artistic productions independently of racism and ableism but as being re_shaped and re_configured by and in and with these interdependent power relations by us in the creation of the exhibition.
we would like to share some of the questions we have been posing ourselves and each other in talking and seeing and feeling our conceptualizations of the exhibition here. we understand them as possible traces_fractures_points of departure and dis_arriving, ways of moving in and through and with the impressions gained in and with the exhibition:
different actor positionings in the exhibition and their reflection upon interdependent power relations
which role do we have as curators? how can we realize dyke_transing and contra_racist ideas in this exhibition? how do we decide upon which artists we choose, which and how many pictures/photos, videos we choose, how we put them into an interplay? is it possible for white curators to exhibit Black photographers’ works and to exhibit images of Black people we perceive as dyke_transed – and interpret these image productions as a ‘general’ utterance on the dyke_transing of viewing? is there a dyke_transing of gazes, images and visualizations independent of racist regimes of gazes, images and visualizations – and for whom and for which social localizations? to what extent do we re_produce racist ideas about dyke_transing or white norms in our perceptions and choices of dyke_transing images and visualizations? how can we realize the gaps and voids in our dyke_transing conventionalizations of visualizations? how to realize differences without essentializing them, without hierarchizing them, without ignoring them, without taking them over from privileged localizations?
what role do the artists have in relation to their image productions? and how do we as curators accept_negotiate_construct this in our exhibition, our choice of artists and artistic productions, in our interactions with the artists?
which role have/do we give the visitors_spectators_interactors in_of the exhibition? how can we as curators interact with them? is our way of putting the images and videos together a form of interaction, an offer_possibility to interact with us? how do we perceive_perform and how do we continue this interaction?
how is the gaze of spectators constructed in the images presented in the exhibition? how are spectators_visitors_interactors positioned in and by the images and the way they are presented in the exhibition?
in the case of the images, what role does the political positioning and the social localization of the photographer play for the way that the images are created, the way they are perceived and by whom, the way they are put into interaction in the exhibition?
the role of titles in perceiving photos: when is the title a frame of interpretation for the photo? to what extent (and for whom) do photos ‘function’ and ‘work’ if they are taken out of their (for example serial) context?
are visual impressions primary to verbal impressions and how can this relation be disturbed_reflected in the exhibition?
are titles for images fixed? can they change? could they be dynamically adapted to different situations and contexts?
how to communicate? when is communication ‘successful’, when is it communicative and what does it mean? when others are touched_inspired_empowered_located when visiting the exhibition? when going home, meeting others? when you feel yourself in the presence of our communication, when you are in contact_touch_movement with yourself?
dyke_transing as shaping spaces
dyke_transing perceptions positionings locations wordings gazes also means shaping spaces
are there any visions beyond one’s own personal, critically located perceptions of dyke_transing?
is it possible to dyke_trans all images and wordings and_or is dyke_transing a homogeneous acting_perceiving across different and interdependent power relations like racism and ableism? why do we as curators think we find ourselves in, can read ourselves into, can feel an interaction with some images and not with others? to what extent are our perceptions constituted by an un_intelligibility of dyke_transing perceiving of realities_spaces_moments_ thoughts_feelings_impressions? to what extent are our perceptions constituted by sexist regimes, to what extent by the interdependency of racist_ableist_sexist normalizations? and to what extent are they dependent on our own social interdependent positionings within these power relations? are there any collective visions of dyke_transing living – and for whom are they collective and for whom are they not? to what extent are utopias already shaped and constituted by interdependent power relations and thus re_producing them in a profound and subtle way? can utopias go beyond interdependent power relations? which positionings are excluded in and by utopias? are utopias in the artistic productions, in their interaction with the visitors of the exhibition, in void spaces in between different positionings of agency? are utopias to be seen and heard? how much empty space and quiet_silence_quietness is needed for utopias?
dyke_transing politicizing visualizations
how can people dyke_trans their perceptions in different situations and contexts? what role does their political dyke_trans-dis_locating and their critical dyke_trans-dis_reflecting play for their listenings and gazes, for their de_ silencings and dis_visualizings? to what extent can we as curators of this exhibition dyke_trans our perceptions with regard to racism, constituted in and by our racist privileges? what role does the fact that we have ableist privileges play for our ideas and approaches to dyke_transing visions?
when to dyke_trans means a new political and critical conceptualization, means a new form of actions creating locations for individual selves – when dyke_trans has not been explicit or nameable before, how can we find traces of dyke _transing in others’ images and words? is dyke_transing perceptions of whatever or_and is it in inter_action with others’ wordings and visualizations? how do we and each of us and everybody else know? and is knowing feeling? and what do we and each of us and everybody else feel when looking at images, listening to words? (can we dyke_trans images depicting cisgendered heterogendered people? who is deciding and whose gaze is authorized in which way and for whom and how?)
de_individualizing dyke_transing: perceptions
dyke_transing perceptions – does it mean visualizing people, images of individuals? in terms of the exhibition, to what extent have we, ja’n and lann, focused on visualizations and thereby made visualizations central? does dyke_transing visual perceptions mean visualizing actions_communities_ collective_political activities_actions? could it mean visualizing movements, dynamics, unfinished open questions and inter_actions, and how is this being visualized? to what extent have we succeeded in finding visions and visualizations? what kind of visualizations have we found – have we seen – and what have we probably dis_seen due to our way of actively looking and choosing images for the exhibition? why do we at least partly re_locate dyke_transselves in visualizing individuals? to what extent are ideas and concepts about visualizations constructed by power relations which are themselves also re_affirmed by the way we conceptualize visualizations in the exhibition? why do we feel we can connect to photographs when depicting the upper part of persons – their heads and especially their faces? and why are we not as moved by and present in and identified by pictures of feet, legs, bellies, backs (and why do we maybe_sometimes want persons on pictures showing their backs to the camera, to turn around? why do we think that showing the back is a perspective change? what ‘reveals’ the front side of a person, what is hidden on_behind_in the back? what constitutes a subject in our visual perception, what irritates us, challenges not only our views but also the way we conceptualize views and gazes as such?
de_individualizing dyke_transing: communities
how is dyke_transing to be worded in actions and to be visualized in communities_collectivities? how is dyke_transing to be realized in listening and seeing? is there an individual way to dyke_trans visualizations and wordings which feels collective, which feels like community? how are collective actions dyke_transed and how can we, offering an inter_action with this exhibition, try to disturb_challenge_relocate de_silencings of collective dyke_transing? what does a collective action of dyke_transing mean? and to what extent is the idea of a collective dyke_transing an individual perception_action, locating the self in some fictive_utopian_realistic_felt_thought_experienced collective idea? how can community be individually enacted_understood_experienced _perceived without putting norms on others’ perceptions and feelings? how can differences, fractures, breaks, ambivalences and paradoxes be constitutive parts of a sense of community and not be its dangers_oppositions _counterimages? how can definitions be opened up, how can openings, de_limiting of definitions and acknowledging of differences be defined_ perceived_realized_understood as constitutive for dyke_transing community? why was it so difficult to find pictures where more than one person or couples are depicted? why does it seem so much closer to our perception and our choices of images as curators to have one person depicted? why didn’t we find many artist-combos or why are artistic productions often individualized although many people maybe have been involved in different ways in the making of a photo_film_comic_painting? to what extent are perceptions and ways to present oneself as an artist made up and shaped by hegemonic forms of individualizing authorship and ownership and individualizing concepts about inventions and ideas? how does this shape perceptions of collaborative processes and how is this re_produced in and through the exhibition? what could it mean to conceptualize oneself as community-based and to conceptualize creative processes as ongoing processual social interactions? what could it mean to understand knowledge productions as collective processes and not as individual ownership and what consequences would this have on forms of collaboration, on conceptualizing community, on concepts of security, financing and visibility? how can a reflection upon and acknowledgment of collaborative working processes be trans_formed and realized in social contexts that are very much focused on the idea of individual properties?
differentiating dyke_transing: interdependent power relations
how do we perceive interdependent power relations realized in dyke_transing visualizations and wordings? to what extent and when is dyke_transing images, pictures and words sensitive to racism? how do we, ja’n and lann, take responsibility for ways of presenting and offering inter_actions on interdependent power relations and structural discriminations in dyke_transing perceptions in and by the exhibition? how have we reflected our own contra_racist positionings with regard to the exhibition and what does it mean concretely for the curation of the exhibition in respect to all of its different decisions? it is not possible to dyke_trans perceptions only from white perspectives. but can we as white people show pictures from Black photographers and photos of Black people and to what extent do we re_produce our racist perspectives in doing so? how can we reflect upon and disturb our own prototypical ideas of contra_racist dyke_transing images of others in the exhibition? for whom do we make the exhibition and to what extent do we generalize our own views?
differentiating dyke_transing: contra_racist actions
how can we continuously reflect upon our own choices in and for the exhibition as a form of interaction and as a form of knowledge production in different ways? how can we realize a contra_racist self-conceptualization in the making of such an exhibition? there are no ‘good’ ways of showing and representing and applying images as part of the exhibition, no perfect forms of viewing and listening in the sense of being non-discriminatory. the exhibition is for us as curators and activists a step in an ongoing process of reflecting upon and enacting anti- and contra_discriminatory practices, in dyke_transing presence, in dyke_transing perceptions. these processes are at the same time also constituted by and themselves constituting structural discriminations – in the way that we have chosen our form of collaboration as a contra_racist contra_ableist collaboration, how we have chosen artists and their productions, in the way that we formulate our questions and needs and ideas for the exhibition, how we interact with the artists and different communities in and about the exhibition. the exhibition is a step in an ongoing process of actions and reflections on many different levels, including forms and needs and aspects
of collaborations, choice of artists, artistic productions, artistic forms, ways of presentation and interaction, forms of dissemination_interaction and visualizations.
differentiating dyke_transing: normalizing age in dyke_transing perceptions
one further dimension of reflecting our own normalizations of dyke_transing the perception of others has been to realize our own age norms when feeling touched by photos. are there any photos of older persons which we dyke_trans in our perception and to what extent are the images which we see_experience as touching_special_close to us depicting people being 40 years or younger? are age norms sexist_racist_ableist in dyke_transing positioning in visualizations and how could we dyke_trans age-norms in reflected disturbing and interdependent ways?
embodying dyke_transing – re_constructing body perceptions
re_constructing bodies in dyke_transing visualizations and locations
how are (perceptions of) bodies constructed in dyke_transing one’s own perceptions and visions? to what extent is it possible for individuals to dyke_trans their perceptions of individuals? is dyke_transing of individuals connected to the_ir faces, th_eir clothing or viewing naked people? (and what particular parts does the spectator’s gaze focus upon: what is to be revealed? – and what parts are irrelevant for dyke_transing individuals’ gazes?) what constitutes bodies in perceptions and to what extent are bodies important if dyke_transing is a political action? is seeing and perceiving of bodies generally possible as an act of dyke_transing or only in special situations and with special people? (and what has to be special then?) to what extent is it a re_production of hegemonic norms of what individuals are, what identity is, a part of a bodily inscribed identity politics which is possibly in opposition to dyke_transing as a political action, as community building, as a momentary always unfinishable social action?
what role do hairstyles play and the reading of hair-performances in the dyke_ transing of perceptions and productions of images: to what extent is hair on_in_with bodies a marker for different critical positionings, and to what
extent is the reading of hair in_on_with bodies a political issue for dyke_ transing perceptions? and for whom? which kinds of hair visualizations are normalized in which contexts, on which body parts and for what and to what extent are these mechanisms and hegemonic normalizations also dependent upon racist perceptions and visually constructed differentiations? how do people with different social positionings read hair differently? when and how and for whom is hair politics a political issue, who regards hair solely as an aesthetic or de_politicized feature and what does this narrate_show_produce about privileges and normalizations?
is the visualization of skin more authentic, closer to ‘the body’ than clothing? are clothes protections_performances_skins? what is under and beyond clothes and skin, what images and ideas about ‘reality’, selves, identities are re_invoked by tensions between skin and clothes in dyke_transing images? do clothes leave marks on and in bodies, where is the line between bodies and clothes? when and for whom is dyke_transing exposed in gazes on bodies? is a face ‘normally’ naked (and not perceived as naked) and conventionally exposed to gazes reading identities into them? is the head part of body-perceptions and why are photos of people often centered around faces? is a face necessary to perceive a person visually and what effect does it have on spectators to focus visually on other parts of a bodily construction of persons? to what extent are constructions about bodies, nakedness, personality in faces and bodies shaped by colonial racism, by racist normalizations of gazes and image productions and how can this be challenged?
wordings as part of bodies
how do we, ja’n and lann, dyke_trans our wordings and simultaneously stay open for the impossibilities of de_silencings? how can we differentiate our perceptions between silencing and re_location shaped by silences? how can we stand the de_locations of wordings formed by discriminating linguistic practices?
to what extent is orality perceived as bodily expression, written language as bodiless? to what extent is voice part of body constructions and words, and voiced nonwords are bodyless? are words voiced and is voice worded? what
kind of norms on communication are re_produced by way of these differentiations? and how is this negotiated in different forms of de_wordings, silences and listening in and about and beyond the exhibition?
unfinishable wordings of endings for_in the booklet
tracing and tearing ways through and with the exhibition is an ongoing process for us, is a start, a rest, a break, a fracture, a line, a circle, an unfinished sentence, an open interaction.
the questions we have formulated here are one of our ways of interacting with each other and with people visiting the exhibition – as the booklet is part of the exhibition and another form of contextualizing artistic productions and our ways of reflection and working.
the questions we have formulated here open up spaces for us, make connections possible, wordings on the limit of unwordable impressions_ situations_positionings and show our way of communicating with each other in the context of the exhibition.
dyke_transing our processes of working and living has resulted in the exhibition and is an ongoing process of dyke_transing our visions