For each annual issue, The Eyes team invites an expert of the Photography world to join us on building the editorial content. For the 10th issue, we were pleased to work with Taous R. Dahmani, Historian of Photography, who brought to this issue a strong and wide perspective on the Crossing thematic.
On November 9th, 2019, we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Berlin Wall fall, then a symbol of hope. And yet, nowadays, dividing walls are more present than ever.
In 1989, there were 11 separating walls in the world ; we count 75 of them today, among which more than a dozen were erected since 2010. More relevant than ever, walls translate the expression of obscurantism : these ideological shields now cover 40.000 km of Earth.
Since the beginnings of photography, with exploring photographers, the purpose has always been to demonstrate that geographical and national limits are pushed further. Inevitably, photographers are fascinated with these lines of separation : borders draw intentions both tangible and symbolic, that challenge photographers’ capacity to describe, narrate and deconstruct physical, legal and dogmatic separations.
This 10th issue of The Eyes therefore questions the narrative power of photographers, in regards to geopolitical issues that affect us. They witness domination relations, conflicts of interest, but also witness circulation, openness and attempts to unity. 1989 then 2001 are contemporary marks of the rise of dividing techniques, yet the 21st century is everything but an inactive century : men are in movement, they cross these established borders, under the photographers’ lense.
Guest curator for this 10th issue, Taous R. Dahmani is a photography historian, working between Paris and London. She is a PhD student working for Pantheon-Sorbonne University Paris, where she teaches 20th century photography history.
Starting in September 2019, Taous will be a researcher attached to the French House of Oxford and Oxford University. Her thesis project is built around the representation of struggles and the struggle for representation. Her writings and her interventions always tackle politics and its relation to the photographic medium.
She wrote for scientific magazines such as Image &Narrative and PhotoResearcher, and for news magazines like 1000 Words. She regularly gives lectures at various academic colloquiums, but also at Les Rencontres d’Arles, at Paris Photo, at Photographers’Gallery or the Tate Modern.