On writing about photography
The Photo Forum is an informal online gathering initiated by photographers and visual artists Charlene Winfred, Matthew Aslett and Tom White, for practitioners in lens-based mediums, enthusiasts and community members to share and learn through open discussions.
In this discussion, Photo Forum is pleased to welcome Zhuang Wubin, Ha Dao and Kurniadi Widodo to join us in a conversation around the process of and motivation for writing about photography — why it is important, and how it shapes our perspectives of visual culture. This is especially relevant in the postcolonial period and with thought to the developing visual and cultural economies of Southeast Asia. All three are contributing editors to Writing Foto, where you can see examples of writing on photography from around the region.
About the speakers:
Zhuang Wubin is a writer who makes photographs, publications and exhibitions. He is interested in photography’s entanglements with modernity, colonialism / nationalism, “Chineseness’, and the Cold War in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong.
Ha Dao (b. 1995) grew up on the outskirts of Hanoi, Vietnam. Inspired by strange incidents that occur in everyday life, her photographic works take an imaginative approach to documentary and are build upon close observations mixed with loose associations. Her works have been featured and exhibited in Photoworks, Trans Asia Photography Asia, Manzi Art Space, Xie Zilong Museum and Objectifs Centre for Photography and Film, among others. Since 2017, Ha has been serving as the managing editor and program coordinator at Matca, an independent initiative dedicated to opening conversations around photography in Vietnam.
Kurniadi Widodo is a photographer and educator based in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Aside from working and making independent projects, since 2010 he has been actively involved in various communities and independent initiatives focusing on photography education, such as Kelas Pagi Yogyakarta (2012-2016), Arkademy (2018-ongoing), and PannaFoto Future Talents (2021-ongoing).