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Rohan Hutchinson, Untitled 2017, courtesy the artist.

Echo Chamber: Emerging Research on Photography

Thursday 13 July 2017, 6pm
Centre for Contemporary Photography
Gold-coin donation, no bookings required.

CCP's Echo Chamber represents a series of occasional, ongoing public programs showcasing current emerging research in all areas of photography, including historical research, technology, communications and contemporary discussion.
Applications to present research for future Echo Chamber public programs are welcome.


Michelle Mountain
Program Manager, Centre for Contemporary Photography


Rohan Hutchinson
The Arctic, climate and an artist’s response

The high Arctic gives the first sign of what’s to come in an uncertain future. Hutchinson was stationed in the Arctic during February and March of 2017 with the purpose of analysing the global repercussions of climate change and creating a body of work in response to this. In this talk, Hutchinson’s focus is on the research behind his upcoming body of work, including the issue of climate change, how it is affecting the Arctic landscape, and what role an artist can play in raising awareness of this. His research looks at a selection of photographic artists who have created work in response to natural and man made disasters, ranging from traditional large format landscape work to alternative darkroom processes and mixed media installations.

Rohan Hutchinson is a Melbourne based photographic artist whose large format photographic work questions the transformation of space and our relationship with the environment. He has participated in artist residency programs at Lethbridge University, Alberta, Canada (2014) and the Centre for Art and Architecture Kanazawa, Japan (2012) and has conducted research trips to China, Alaska and the Arctic. Hutchinson has had solo exhibitions locally and internationally, including at Strange Neighbour Gallery, Perth Centre for Photography, Queensland Centre for Photography, Kanazawa Art Port, Colour Factory, Flinders Lane Gallery (Upstairs) and Seventh Art Space. In addition to exhibiting his works, Hutchinson has also created several artist books.

Charmaine Toh
Reading the Photographic Archive

This talk will look at the status of the historical photographic archive in Singapore, its relationship with power and its subsequent potential for writing history. Early photographic history in Singapore has been largely determined by the colonial archive, that is, images produced and circulated for British consumption. From the late 19th century to early 20th century, studios such as GR Lambert & Co. and Sachtler & Co., and photographers like John Thomson, created an archive of ethnographic types and views of Southeast Asia, providing the first impression of the region for the European viewers. This visual imagination persisted through the 20th century and laid out the conventions by which Southeast Asia has since been represented. In other words, it is not only an archive of colonial power and desires, but also a visual colonization of the landscapes of the region. The paper concludes by highlighting the difficulties of using such archival material, paying particular attention to the issues with aesthetics and nostalgia.

Charmaine Toh is a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne researching pictorial photography from Singapore. She is also Curator at National Gallery Singapore; recent exhibitions included Danh VoTang Da Wu: Earth Work 1979 and Siapa Nama Kamu: Art in Singapore since the 19th century. Previously, she was the Programme Director at Objectifs Centre for Photography and Film where she played a pivotal role in revitalising the gallery programme. Charmaine co-curated the 2013 Singapore Biennale.

Kelvin Lau
Exploring the mental health of young people from a migrant background using photo-interviewing

“Photo-interviewing” is a qualitative social research method whereby participants create photographs around a selected issue and discuss their meaning within an interview setting.  Kelvin Lau utilized photo-interviewing in his research project to investigate how young people from a culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) migrant background identified, explained, and responded to subjective experiences of mental distress and ill-health.
He will discuss how the engagement of photo-interviewing by fifteen young people from a CALD migrant background created opportunities in his research for locating and inductively interpreting the meaning of their mentally distressing experiences, and for exploring the barriers they encountered in seeking support for these distress experiences.

Kelvin Lau is a PhD student at the Department of General Practice, University of Melbourne. He is scheduled to complete his PhD research project in August 2017.  He also works as a GP at Headspace Collingwood, a mental health support service for young people between 14 and 25 years of age.

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