The Whitworth, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester M15 6ER
On view until 19 November 2017
As promised, my next review of The Whitworth’s summer exhibitions explores the art of London-based artist Raqib Shaw. His gloriously opulent exhibition is part of the South Asia art and culture programme that marks the 70th anniversary of Partition. The programme is part of the work of the New North & South network which involves ten North of England organisations.
The exhibition is co-curated by Dr Maria Balshaw, Director of Tate, Diana Campbell Betancourt, Director of Dhaka Art Summit and the artist himself.
Some key facts about Raqib Shaw:
Shaw was born in Calcutta and grew up in Kashmir, which he describes as a very beautiful place etched on his memory.
His family are involved in textiles.
Originally he wanted to be a teacher of English literature.
He is totally devoted to his art and lives for his work.
His Peckham studio doubles as his home and is filled with beautiful objects and trailing plants.
The interior of the first main gallery at The Whitworth is transformed, and now has the feel of an exclusive boudoir-style club. Shaw’s newly commissioned wallpaper covers every wall, dark both in colour and theme (it’s available to buy in The Whitworth shop as a limited edition). It is called ‘After A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ (see below) and features phantasmagorical beings intertwined with braided creepers and branches over a background the colour of lapis lazuli.
Last week Jennie (our Projects Manager) and myself presented at the Archives and Records Association (ARA) conference, here in Manchester. Our paper was called:
Telling the Whole Story: Community partnerships and collection development in the Legacy of Ahmed project
We’ve been thinking a lot recently about the way we work, as an organisation that undertakes both outreach projects and heritage collection work*. Not only do we give equal weight to these areas of our work, the two have a symbiotic relationship: The outputs of community and schools-based projects (such as oral history interviews, teaching resources, donated ephemera, creative works and publications) are accessioned into the library and archive collections**, ensuring that community voices are preserved for the long-term, but also building a bank of resources to support ongoing outreach work – both our own and other people’s.
It’s the reason we call ourselves a ‘resource centre’ rather than an archive or library; our collections have always been intended to have contemporary, active and practical purposes. Continue reading →
The Whitworth, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester M15 6ER
This exhibition was on view until 23rd July 2017.
The Whitworth has some fantastic exhibitions on over the summer, I’m especially excited to see the gallery’s contribution to the New North and South programme, bringing the work of South Asian artists to prominence. But before I talk about the current exhibitions (watch this space next week) I want to reflect on another piece we saw there recently that had a profound effect on me: Vertigo Sea, a three-screen film installation by the artist, filmmaker and founder member of Black Audio Film Collective John Akomfrah.
The final post in our Race and Crime series comes from Shu Chee: A guideline for students researching disparages in sentencing, and how the Race Relations Resource Centre’s Criminal Justice collection can help.
Your task: Write an essay on the racial disparities in trial and sentencing.
So it’s assessment time again; you have organised your lecture notes, exploited Google Scholar and the Westlaw database, gone through dozens of journal articles…and yet you just can’t seem to begin writing. Why are all my readings all over the place? Do I have sufficient evidence supporting claims of ‘lighter skin, lighter sentence’? Are my sources reliable and relevant?Continue reading →
The next post in our Race and Crime series is an introduction to Muslim hate crime from Natascha Wooliams and Katja Swinnock.
What is Islamphobia?
‘Hate crime’ is not limited to physical attacks, it includes a wide range of criminal activity from offensive graffiti, damage to property, harassment, intimidation and verbal abuse. Anti-Muslim hate crime falls under the category of ‘religious hate crime’, where the crime is perceived, by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a prejudice against a person’s religion or perceived religion.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary the first recorded use of the term ‘Islamophobia’ was in an article in the journal ‘Insight’ on 4th February 1991 as an extension of the term ‘xenophobia’. ‘Islamophobia’ means a dread or hatred of Islam, which is extended to a fear and hate of all Muslims.
In the third installment of our Race and Crime series Teeah Blake introduces the issues around disproportionate stop and search practices in the UK.
Philando Castile, Alton Sterling, Eric Garner, Freddie Gray, Tamir Rice. Recognise these names? Perhaps you would recognise their faces. They are just a few of the unarmed Black men who have been killed by police in the USA in recent years, and with the help of camera phones and Facebook live, we have been able to see these shootings as and when they happen. The media coverage of these events has been extensive and received by many, leading to the re-ignition of the Black Lives Matter Campaign (#BLM) with protests all over the USA, as well as here in the UK.
Courtesy of Imgur
This most violent type of racial discrimination is rarely seen in the UK. However, there is evidence of a persistent and damaging form of discrimination against ethnic minorities by police officers in the form of disproportionate stop and search.
Image courtesy Chris White (www.flickr.com/photos/76345608@N00)
Although most of us are aware that the police carry out stop and searches, few of us will have first-hand experience of the process. This means we’re basing our understanding of stop and search on television, newspapers and other pieces of media, which don’t always give the full picture. Luckily, the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre has a great selection of resources, making it easy to learn more about the nature of stop and searches on minority ethnic groups.
In Harper’s well-acclaimed To Kill A Mockingbird, Tom was treated as a second-class citizen and received an unfair trial after being accused of raping a white woman. Despite significant evidence proving his innocence, he was convicted, based largely on his skin colour. Although it is an overstatement to say that Tom is the fictional equivalent of the average, working-class African American defendant, it is undeniable that some institutionalised racism and disparities in sentencing do exist in real life.
In this post Dr Claire Fox, our Academic Director here at the Resource Centre and Senior Lecturer in Criminology at the University’s School of Law, introduces a recent student engagement project and the Race and Crime blog post series.
Courtesy of Tandana Archive
The Resource Centre has a wealth of resources that are regularly accessed by members of the public, community groups and professionals, as well as staff and students from across the University of Manchester and beyond. However, we recently identified a bit of gap in our user groups – that of undergraduate students from some sections of our own university. Our collections are highly relevant to undergraduate study across a wide range of humanities disciplines, but facilitating students to come down from campus to our location in Manchester Central Library is an ongoing challenge. Continue reading →