Inaugural WOPHA Miami convention makes room for women in photography
Aldeide Delgado sees Miami as a frontier, a meeting place, a city where minds and ideas from all over the world come together and exchange views and critiques. Thus, it is the ideal place for an international congregation of academics and thinkers – in the case of Delgado, the inaugural Women Photographers International Archive (WOPHA), a summit for women in photography that will bring together photographers, historians and curators from over 15 different countries. at the Pérez Art Museum in Miami on November 18. Entitled Women, Photography and Feminisms, the Congress is the first of its kind, a necessary pioneering force for marginalized voices on the ground.
Delgado founded WOPHA as a non-profit, with the aim of amplifying the contributions of female, trans, queer and non-binary photographers and thinkers in modern and contemporary art. The Congress philosophy began with the Delgado Catalog of Cuban Women Photographers, an online database dedicated to preserving the work of women photographers in Cuba. But international protests for women’s rights in recent years prompted her to expand the catalog globally, which gave birth to WOPHA.
Delgado explained that while advances in female representation in art and photography have been made as a result of movements like #MeToo, the necessary work remains to be done.
“All of these political scenarios have influenced groups of organizations and collectives of women photographers,” she says. “And that is why it is so important to do the governance of the first international meeting, where these organizations and these collectives can come together.”
More than 25 internationally renowned academics and photographers will attend the Congress, which is free and open to anyone, both virtually and in person. The Congress will be punctuated by conversations on collaboration, aesthetics and the rapprochement of women in the arts, through the eyes of feminism and decolonization. The conversations will feature academics such as Laylah Amatullah Barrayn, co-founder of MFON: Women Photographers of the African Diaspora; Anna Fox, founder of Fast Forward: Women in Photography; Roxana Marcoci, Senior Curator of Photography at MoMA; and award-winning documentary photographer Maggie Steber, among others.
WOPHA will engage with other institutions across Miami, including the Arts Connection Foundation, Green Space Miami, the Lucie Foundation, the Betsy Hotel and the Rubell Museum. The inclusion of diverse spaces throughout the city reflects Delgado’s hopes to make Miami a crucial space for speech and conversation and to “position WOPHA in the international context”.
“The widening of the scope of the project is the result of my identification with the political character of the city and the importance of highlighting the work of women not only in the Caribbean, Latin America and South Florida. , but in the whole world in general “, declared the founder,” and how, thanks to this concept of border space, it can be made possible “.
One of the most anticipated events of the event is Delgado’s conversation with Andrea Nelson, curator of “The New Woman Behind the Camera”, organized by the National Gallery of Art in association with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In conjunction with the wide range of speeches in Congress, he will explore the impact of women on modern photography.
The Congress will also feature Luce Lebart’s US debut and Marie Robert’s A Global History of Women Photographers, a stunning anthology featuring over 450 images from over 300 women photographers throughout history.
Delgado hopes to bring Congress together every three years, allowing the collective to “continue the proposals that we make in Congress,” she said. “It’s about acting. It’s about creating our own spaces and seeing how we can increase our impact in a global context.
Ultimately, she hopes the gatherings will have an outside influence on the world of photography. “We seek to have an impact on the programming of institutions, encouraging them to collect, exhibit and research the practices of women in photography,” says Delgado. “We want to see more opportunities for women photographers.”
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