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The Spectre of Colonialism: Art, Feminism and Humanity in the 21st Century

  • Sat, 22 Jun 2019
  • 1.30 PM - 3.30 PM

Visual artists Chinar Shah, Scarlett Crawford and poet Yazzie Min will be joined by Bluecoat’s Assistant Curator, Amrita Dhallu to share their work as artists and writers belonging to societies haunted by Britain’s colonial history.

This talk forms part of the Articulating Women: Interrogating Intersectionaity and Empowering Women Through Critical Engagements conference with Liverpool Hope University, Christ University Bangalore and FACT.

Attendance is free and open to all.





The Articulating Women project seeks to raise awareness of the complexities of gender expectations and constraints as these operate within different cultural contexts. We believe that understanding paves the way for actions, and that understanding is therefore a step toward achieving greater gender equality. Articulating Women has included academic conferences, a film competition and an artist residency. The project is funded by AHRC (Arts and Humanities Research Council) 

Chinar Shah is artist in residence at Bluecoat for the Articulating Women project. Shah works across photography, installation and digital interventions such as her 2017 work Apology For Sale, which existed on the online auction website eBay. Much of Shah’s work deals with photography and its implications in moments of violence and conflict. She is the founder of Home Sweet Home, an exhibition series that uses domestic spaces to show works of art. She also teaches at the Srishti Institute for Art, Design and Technology (Bangalore, India) and is the co-editor of Photography in India: From Archives to Contemporary Practice (Bloomsbury, UK, 2018). Her recent work, A Memorial for the New Economy, produced with publisher Reliable Copy, deals with the 2016 demonetisation of Indian 500 and 1000 rupee banknotes and the deaths occurring as a consequence of this policy.

Scarlett Crawford is an artist and educator based in London. She holds a Masters in Global Cultural and Creative Industries from the School of Oriental and African studies. Her photographic work examines the semiotics of race and class by creating images that try to portray narratives of the under represented and interrogate power structures. To mark the introduction of the Race Relations Acts in 1965, 1968 and 1976, the Parliaments Speakers Advisory Committee on Works of Art commissioned Crawford to undertake a residency to create work with communities across the UK that were impacted by the introduction of the early race discrimination legislation. As part of this project, Crawford worked with Bluecoat and young people from the Greenhouse Project and Liverpool Community Spirit’s Multi-Faith Youth Council to create artworks which explore the impact of race relations legislation on their lives.

Yazzie Min is a poet, motivational speaker, empowerment coach and founder of Stand for Humanity, a movement inspired by her work campaigning for refugees since 2015. Yazzie saw that the wider problem surrounding not only the refugee crisis but indeed all other humanitarian issues, was that of apathy and a growing sense of helplessness amongst Western society. Stand for Humanity aims to break down these barriers by simply asking people to RE-connect to that which makes them human - and make a pledge to one thing solely for the sake of humanity. This serves as a reminder of the power that lies within us as individuals to make change and rather than feeling discouraged by being 'only one person' to in fact feel empowered. Through her work as both a poet and a public speaker, Yazzie Min has often responded to instances of racism, inequality and lack of education in British society. 

Amrita Dhallu is a curator working across London and Liverpool. She currently holds the post of Assistant Curator at Bluecoat, Liverpool, and is undertaking research at Iniva, London. Her work focuses on providing support structures for emerging British artists of Black and Asian descent, through commissioning, creating networks and establishing intergenerational learning spaces. Her current research looks at radically positioning care and wellbeing within formal arts education and exhibition making in order for artists to re-think ways of professional development. She has recently produced Now Let Us Shift, an e-publication exploring an intergenerational discourse around the creativity, wellbeing and labour of women artists of colour - devised as part of her role as the 2018-19 Curatorial Assistant: Commissions at Chisenhale Gallery, London. She is also the lead artist of Camden Arts Centre's 2018-2019 PEER FORUM. 


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