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Seeing Darkness

México Noir: Rethinking the Dark in Contemporary Narrative and Photography

Notes on Speakers

Cristina Rivera Garza Fronteriza y errante a la vez. Escritora y lectora, sobre todo. Actualmente, es profesora de Escritura Creativa en la Universidad de California, San Diego. Entre sus novelas se distinguen Nadie me verá llorar, que este año cumple 15 años con tapa dura y prólogo inédito, así como La muerte me da -- ambas ganadoras del Premio Internacional Sor Juana en 2011 y 2009, respectivamente. Sus libros han sido traducidos, entre otros, al inglés, francés, italiano, portugués, y coreano. Recientemente obtuvo el Premio Internacional Roger Caillois (Francia, 2013), y la Universidad de Houston le otorgó un Doctorado Honoris Causa. Es miembro del Sistema Nacional de Creadores de Arte en México. Twitter:@criveragarza

Dr John Kraniauskas is a specialist in Latin American literary and cultural studies, cultural theory and political philosophy with particular interests in relations between state and cultural forms. He has a long-term interest in noir and photography. He was a founding co-editor of the Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies (Travesia). His edition and translation of Carlos Monsiváis, Mexican Postcards, Verso, London, 1997 (and subsequent reprints) was given a Special Mention for the LASA 98 Bryce Wood book prize. Recent books include Políticas literarias: política y acumulación en la cultura latino-americana (with a Prologue by Roger Bartra), FLACSO, Mexico, 2012. He is currently preparing three books: on transcultural and subaltern studies; crime form and the state in Mexico (in collaboration with Alberto Moreiras); and Eva Perón and the populist state.

He has contributed essays (on literature, art, film and theory) to: the Archivos critical edition of Miguel Angel Asturias, El Señor Presidente; Walter Benjamin's Philosophy: Destruction and Experience, eds. A. Benjamin and P. Osborne; Las culturas de fin de siglo, ed. J. Ludmer; Cannibalism and the Colonial Order, eds. F. Barker, P. Hulme & M. Iverson; Fronteras de la modernidad en América Latina, eds. H. Herlinghaus & M. Moraña; The Latin American Cultural Studies Reader, eds A. Rios, A. de Sarto & A. Trigo, Walter Benjamin: Critical Evaluations in Cultural Theory ed. P. Osborne, among others. Some of these articles have also been translated and published in the Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Portuguese. John has published major articles in Boundary 2, New Formations, Radical Philosophy, Angelaki, Revista de Crítica Cultural, Nuevo Texto Crítico, Boletín, Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, Revista Iberoamericana, Nepantla: Views from South, Traces and Sight and Sound.

Gerardo Suter (Buenos Aires, Argentina, 1957) is an award-winning visual artist and academic. He holds a PhD from the Polytechnic University of Valencia within the Art: Production and Research Program. He currently co-ordinates the Contemporary Visual Research Group of the Faculty of Arts at the Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos (UAEM) in Mexico. He considers the education process an extension of his activity as a multimedia installation artist. This productive interplay is behind the conception and implementation of the interdisciplinary and intermedial MFA in Art Production (MaPA), which is the first graduate programme in Mexican institutions designed by artists of different disciplines, and entirely focused on creative practice as research and academic inquiry. He began his creative work in 1976 in the field of the image and since 1990 his interest has focused on the development of site specific projects, where he links large-scale photography with other media, such as the cinematic image, sound, or text, using architecture as the final substrate of his work. In recent years, and based upon his practice, he has developed the concept of expanded image. His most recent large scale exhibition projects include DF penúltima región (Antiguo Colegio de San Ildefonso, Mexico City, 2011), Canto de obsidiana (Museum of Contemporary Art of Oaxaca, 2012) and Equivalencias (Center for the Arts of Nuevo León, Monterrey, 2012). He is currently working on the series Observatorios, three installations that address the issue of representation, perception and the gaze, from the field of the image. His work has been published in two anthologies of contemporary photography: Blink (Phaidon Press) and Mapas Abiertos (Lunwerg Editors). Four monographs on his work have been published: Tiempo Inscrito (Museum of Modern Art, Mexico), Gerardo Suter: Labyrinth of Memory (Americas Society, New York), Mapeo / Gerardo Suter (Turner, Madrid) and DF penúltima región (Centro de la Imagen / CONACULTA, Mexico). He was appointed to represent Mexico in the III and VII Havana Biennial (1989/2000) and in the XXIII International Biennial of São Paulo (1996). In 1997, he received for the first time, the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Visual Arts, and in 1998, he was awarded the Rockefeller-MacArthur Fellowship Film, Video and Multimedia. In 2015 he was awarded the official prize for his artistic trajectory by the National System of Photographic Archives in Mexico. Suter has participated in all the major international festivals related to the image: Mois de la Photo (Paris), FotoSeptiembre (Mexico City), FotoFest (Houston), Encuentros Abiertos (Buenos Aires), Fotobienal (Vigo), Encontros da Image (Braga), Fotografia/ Festival Internazionale (Rome), Huesca Imagen (Huesca), Foto30 (Guatemala), Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal (Montreal), Photoquai (Paris), Fotoencuentros (Murcia), PhotoEspaña (Madrid).

José Luis Barrios is Professor of Philosophy in the Universidad Iberoamericana and curator and member of the board of the Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporáneo at the UNAM, Mexico City. He is the author of the forthcoming Máquinas, dispositivos y agenciamientos. arte, afecto y representación and of the following books: Atrocitas fascinans. Imagen, horror, deseo (2010), El cuerpo disuelto. Lo colosal y lo monstruoso (2010), El reino de Coloso: el lugar del asedio en la época de la imagen (2008), Símbolo, fantasma y afecto. Seis miradas sobre el arte contemporáneo en México (2007), Ensayos de crítica cultural. Una mirada fenomenológica a la contemporaneidad (2004). He is also editor of the forthcoming volumes Afecto y saberes: Crítica cultural y desestabilización de la representación, Historia y memoria. Notas sobre el olvido como condición crítica del pasado, and Afecto, archivo, memoria. Territorios y escrituras del pasado.

Geoffrey Kantaris currently specializes in the field of contemporary Latin American urban film, and lectures on Latin American literature and film in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of Cambridge. He was Director of the Centre of Latin American Studies in Cambridge 2005-10, and is currently Cultural Studies editor of the Bulletin of Latin American Research. He has published a wide range of articles and book chapters on Latin American film, popular culture, Southern Cone literature and women's writing, as well as The Subversive Psyche: Contemporary Women's Narrative from Argentina and Uruguay (Oxford University Press) and Latin American Popular Culture: Politics, Media, Affect (Tamesis).

Elsa M. Treviño is a PhD Candidate at the Centre of Latin American Studies at the University of Cambridge and a Gates Cambridge Scholar. Her doctoral thesis Belonging Elsewhere focuses on Mexican literary fiction of the past two decades and the role that changing understandings of space play in the construction and representation of contemporary subjectivities. Before relocating to the UK from Mexico, she graduated summa cum laude with an MA in Humanistic Studies and a BA in International Relations at Tecnológico de Monterrey. In 2010, she obtained an MPhil from Cambridge with a study of the novels of Santiago Roncagliolo. She has presented her research at national and international conferences, and her work has appeared in Modern Languages Open and Les Ateliers du SAL. Along with her academic activities, she has an active interest in creative writing and has contributed to the literary project Palabras Errantes as a translator of texts by Juan Diego Incardona, Lucía Lorenzo and Bernardo Esquinca.