Visiting Artist’s Talk – Janis Rafa

For this week's Visiting Artist's Talk we welcome Janis Rafa, an Amsterdam-Athens based artist and filmmaker.

Janis Rafa’s body of work combines film, video installation and sculpture. She was a resident at the Rijksakademie (NL, 2013/14) and holds a PhD in Fine Art (University of Leeds, 2012). Her recent work is presented at 59th Venice Biennial.

Rafa’s work as a visual artist combines feature length film, video, video-installation and sculpture, in order to grow attention to a non-anthropocentric, non-logocentric notion of subjectivities and places. Her works repetitively examines the connections of moving image art and film, in relation to fiction, narration, abstraction and symbolism. Her narratives describe a world in turmoil that focuses on the marginal, the invisible, the violated body, the mythical and the occult. Rituals of farewelling, burying or unearthing, submitting or revenging form a circular pattern of narration in which the non-human agency is recognised in order to reveal political and ethical dimensions, as another kind of archaeology.

Her debut feature Kala azar (2020) premiered at the International Film Festival Rotterdam (KNF award) and at New Directors/New Films, MoMA (2021). Her work has been exhibited in various venues, amongst them: Centraal Museum solo-exhibition (NL, 2019), Goethe-Institut (GR, 2021), MAXXI (2020), State of Concept Athens (2020), Manifesta 12 (2018), Palazzo Medici Riccardi (2017), Centre d’art Contemporain Chanot (2017), Mardin Biennial (2018), Kunsthalle Munster (2017), EYE Filmmuseum (2016/ 2021), Palazzo Strozzi (2015).

About the Visiting Artists’ Talks series

The Visiting Artist’s Talk (VAT) series hosts talks by an exciting range of arts practitioners from around the world every Monday afternoon 2–4pm during teaching weeks.

All of our talks are compulsory for our Fine Art students but are also open to anyone else who would like to join us.

Janis will be joining us live via Zoom.

For more information, please email Cesar Cornejo.

Directions to the Conference Auditorium building

Facing away from Parkinson steps: Turn right, go straight down the hill to the EC Stoner Building, turn left down a short hill and go under the building. Go straight ahead until you get to Willow Terrace Road, The Edge is in front of you. Turn left, then turn right into the car park, follow the path round to the back of The Edge. The Conference Auditorium Building will now be visible across the car park to the right.

See the campus map.


Janis Rafa, Lacerate, 2020, film still.