16 December, 2011: Lecture Teun Voeten and opening exhibition '20 years of War Photography & World of Walls'

War photographer Teun Voeten will talk about the challenges of his work. This is followed by the opening of the exhibition ’20 Years of War Photography & World of Walls’ with his photographic work and photographic work by three Leiden University anthropologists.

Lecture 'Anthropology and War Photography - the Depiction of Conflicts' by Teun Voeten

Teun Voeten will elaborate on the pragmatic and amoral approach photojournalists use to exercise their profession, and the ethical and aesthetical dilemmas they face in an ever increasing indifferent world that seems to be oversaturated with imagery.


Exhibition '20 years of War Photography' - Teun Voeten

Teun Voeten originally studied Cultural Anthropology and Philosophy at Leiden University. During his studies he learnt photography from his uncle, the well-known architectural photographer Sybolt Voeten. On trips to New York in 1987 and 1988, Voeten developed his interest in documenting social issues.

Now he is an award-winning photojournalist and author who has been covering the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Sudan, Angola, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan, Colombia, Gaza, Liberia, Lebanon and Iraq. His work has been published in 'Vanity Fair', 'Newsweek', 'The New Yorker' and 'National Geographic' among others. Voeten's style is clear and simple without artistic pretensions: he sees photography as a vehicle to convey information, and although some find his images esthetically very pleasing, the content has the priority.

More information
Please visit Teun Voeten's website.

Exhibition 'World of Walls'

Definition walls
This exhibition centers on the vibrant social life of walls in four different cities around the world. Walls, in the strict sense of their meaning, are defined as physical markers that divide spaces. But walls are more than physical boundaries. Walls often mark social boundaries and have symbolic values attached to them that transcend the space in which they can be found. Only think of the evocative meanings of the Berlin wall or of graffiti as counterculture or global trend.

Four cities
The walls featuring in this exhibition all have different connections to the world around them. The photos by Annemarie Samuels, for example, feature slogans on remnant walls as informal monuments. They remember the destructive tsunami which caused death and destruction in Banda Aceh (Indonesia) in 2004. Rivke Jaffe’s photos display a genre of countercultural graffiti that can be found in Kingston (Jamaica) in poor neighborhoods. These images reflect the local politics of dons and gangs that run these inner-city neighborhoods. The photos of Patricia Spyer show how in a religiously-inflected conflict in Ambon (Indonesia) billboards and murals of Jesus are part of a Christian manifestation of uncertainty and crisis. The myriad faces of Jesus presence God and mark Christian territory. Roos Gerritsen explores the elaborate visual street culture in Chennai’s (India) urban spaces. The images which range from commercial publicity to vernacular productions by local political party supporters are paradoxically embraced and outlawed at the same time.

More information
Please contact Roos Gerritsen


Practical details

Lecture Teun Voeten
Date  Friday 16 December, 2011
Time  3.30-4.30pm
Location  Room 1.A15
Opening exhibition '20 Years of War Photography & World of Walls'
Date  Friday 16 December, 2011
Time  4.30pm
Location  Central Hall Pieter de la Court building

Last Modified: 13-12-2011