Dr. Temi Odumosu - Who is the Subject? Wilhelm Marstrand’s portrait of Justina Antoine and other images

This talk explores what appears, what is lost, and what could be reimagined in the process of researching African and African-descendant people in the history of art.

Image may contain: Sky, Tree, Art, Painting, Adaptation.

Wilhelm Marstrand. Portræt af Otto Marstrands to døtre og deres vestindiske barnepige, Justina Antoine, i Frederiksberg Have, 1856 – 1857. Oil on Canvas. 89 x 67 cm. Statens Museum for Kunst. KMS8833.

The focus is a portrait from the Danish colonial archive, representing a young woman called Justina Antoine. She was an Afro-Caribbean nanny to the Marstrand family, whose presence in the genre of Danish portraiture is rare. Her representation as a figure of interest in Danish art raises critical questions about the ways in which Black people are visualised as evidence of colonial encounters.

Using the wider cultural archive to complicate our relationship to, and understanding of, her imaging, the talk reconsiders how we come to look at the past, and what we do in/with those moments of contact.

Dr. Temi Odumosu is an art historian, curator, and senior lecturer in cultural studies at Malmö University in Sweden. She is author of the award-winning book Africans in English Caricature 1769-1819: Black Jokes White Humour (2017). Her research interests include colonial visual cultures, archival praxis, postmemorial art and performance, and ethics-of-care in representation.

Overall, she is focused on the multitude ways art can mediate social transformation and healing. She is currently a member of the research network The Art of Nordic Colonialism: Writing Transcultural Art Histories.

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Meeting ID: 645 3169 5431

Passcode: 266165

Published Feb. 22, 2021 1:17 PM - Last modified Feb. 22, 2021 1:25 PM