Postgraduate Researcher Presentation Series — Ghada Habib and Thomas Jungnitz-Watson

Please join us for the second in a series of presentations from current postgraduate researchers based in the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies.

This week we will welcome Ghada Habib and Thomas Jungnitz-Watson. The event will take place on Zoom and all are welcome.

The series is designed to establish dialogue between individuals with similar research concerns whilst enabling all attendees to gain an insight into the breadth of enquiry currently being conducted across the school.

By bringing two presenters together in this way, it is hoped conversation will be stimulated and maintained well beyond the virtual walls of the auditorium.

Ghada Habib

Ghada Habib is in the first year of her PhD. This presentation will unpack efforts made since the start of this research project to place the practice of John Akomfrah in conversation with the critical thought of Walter Benjamin and Stuart Hall, and to begin to query the terms of the proposal.

Thoughts about what kind of relation to the past is being evoked in Akomfrah’s films, the value of the post-colonial frame for recognising these modes of inquiry, and the intersection between Akomfrah’s artistic strategies, and historical and critical thought form the bulk of this work.

As well as evoking the political import of his practice, these readings of Akomfrah’s works and efforts to locate him in relation to traditions of thought, have produced new questions for the project and brought methodological concerns to the fore. Voicing these issues, the presentation will create a space for speculating on the project’s potentialities and possible elaborations.

Thomas Jungnitz-Watson

Thomas Jungnitz-Watson is in the first year of their PhD. This presentation will reconsider ‘Institutional Critique’. Institutional Critique has been predominantly understood as heteronomous: as either a quasi-sociological enterprise or an activist practice. Instead, it might be appraised as autonomous art: as a received genre form, whose immanently artistic significance resides in its resolution to the ‘crisis of modernism’.

Responding to Conceptual Art’s dispersal of the artwork across relations of production, distribution and reception, Institutional Critique restored unity to the work of art through the commodity-structured appearance of museum and gallery. But its success was limited. This presentation will consider why. Speculations on emergent possibilities for Marxian art will follow.

How to book

For a link to this event, or for more information about the series, please contact Benjamin Jenner or Gemma Plumpton.

The intention is that these presentations will operate on a monthly basis during term time. It is also the intention that they should not only be the province of postgraduate researchers but that staff might also wish to present in a similar way.


TOOLBOX, DOING/THINKING, 2020.  Courtesy of Benjamin Jenner.