Agents of Concern: Images and Empathy

Conference Documentation

The conference and exhibition project Agents of Concern: Images and Empathy brought together an international group of artists and scholars to examine how images affect our emotional and cognitive understanding of the experiences and mental states of others. The project created a dialogue between artistic and academic ways of speaking about, with, and to images. Exploring a wide spectrum of visual strategies for evoking empathy, the project’s contributors addressed diverse topics including the representation of migration, images of war and political protest, sentimentality in art, colonialism, human rights, and the creation of visual evidence.

Below you can find the videos of the talks at the conference, which took place at PXL-MAD School of Arts on November 16–18, 2023.

The conference was made possible by PXL-MAD Research and Hasselt University, in collaboration with PXL-MAD university gallery KRIEG?, the Flemish Government, and Doctoral Schools UHasselt. The conference was initiated and coordinated by Toon Leën. The recordings of the talks came about with the help of PXL Digital Learning Lab.

More details can be found in the Agents of Concern brochure here.

November 16, 2023

Burning Images: Performing Resemblance

Dr Florian Göttke – University of Amsterdam & Dutch Art Institute

This video is age-restricted and only available after signing in on YouTube. Watch it here:

It has often been argued that people’s empathetic (or antipathetic) response to images stems from images’ visual resemblance to their ‘prototype.’ Drawing from my research on the use of effigies in political protest, I argue that it is not the perception of lifelikeness, but rather conventions governing these theatrical protest performances that compel people to engage in make-believe, to act as if these images were alive, and to experience and express feelings towards them.

Florian Göttke is a visual artist, researcher, and educator based in Amsterdam. He investigates the functioning of public images and their relationship to social memory, politics, and violence, combining visual modes of research (collecting, close reading, and image montage) with academic research. Göttke received his PhD from the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis at the University of Amsterdam on the peculiar practice of hanging or burning effigies—scarecrow-like puppets representing politicians—as a form of political protest. His dissertation, under the title Burning Images: A History of Effigy Protests (Valiz, 2021), combines two discursive narratives: a linear text and a parallel assemblage of images. Image narrative and text are like the two voices in a musical composition, each in turn taking the lead to introduce themes, structure the work, direct the reader, halt attention, or accelerate the flow.

Images and Objects: Russia’s War against Ukraine

Professor Miglė Bareikytė – European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder)
Natasha Klimenko – Freie Universität Berlin
Dr Mykola Homanyuk – Kherson State University
Dr Bohdan Shumylovych – Center for Urban History, L’viv
Dr Denys Shatalov – Centre for Advanced Study Sofia

The video essay Images and Objects: Russia’s War against Ukraine explores the possibilities and boundaries of an empathic gaze, while providing a personal engagement with various forms of visual representation in the context of multi-sensory warfare. Using art and documentation by Ukrainian practitioners, Images and Objects explores the participants’ personal or academic relationship to images, monuments, museums, and environments in the context of Russia’s war against Ukraine. The video was made in collaboration with Mykola Homanyuk, Svitlana Matviyenko, Gintautas Mažeikis, Denys Shatalov, Bohdan Shumylovych and features artworks by Kateryna Lisovenko, Mykyta Lyskov, and Danylo Movchan.

On November 16, 2023, following the screening of Images and Objects, Natasha Klimenko and Miglė Bareikytė were in conversation with Mykola Homanyuk, Bohdan Shumylovych, and Denys Shatalov, who joined them virtually from Ukraine.

Miglė Bareikytė holds the Chair for Digital Studies at European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder), where she is a dual member of the Faculty of Social and Cultural Sciences and the European New School of Digital Studies (ENS). Her research focuses on digital war sensing, media geopolitics, and algorithmic accountability, with a particular focus on Central and Eastern Europe, especially Ukraine and Lithuania.

Natasha Klimenko is a PhD researcher at the Graduate School Global Intellectual History at the Freie Universität Berlin and the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Her research looks at the transregional artist networks operating in Soviet Central Asia in the first half of the twentieth century, with a focus on the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic.

Mykola Homanyuk is a sociologist, geographer, and theatre maker. He defended his PhD thesis in sociology at V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Ukraine. Currently, he is an associate professor at Kherson State University, Ukraine. His research interests centre on the politics of memory, critical toponymics, ethnic studies, and documentary.

Bohdan Shumylovych studied art history at the L’viv National Academy of Arts, Ukraine and modern history at the Central European University in Budapest. In 2020 he received his PhD from the European University Institute in Florence. He is a researcher at the L’viv Center for Urban History, where he works on media history in East Central Europe and the Soviet Union.

Denys Shatalov obtained his PhD in history in 2016. Following the beginning of the full-scale Russo-Ukrainian war he started his research project ‘That WarandThis War’: The Entanglement and Interaction of the Imagination, Commemoration and Memory of World War II and the Ongoing War in Ukraine. He is a fellow of the Sustaining Ukrainian Scholarship programme at the Centre for Advanced Study Sofia, Bulgaria.

November 17, 2023

Sentimental Pictures Between Beweeglijkheid and Einfühlung: Towards a Definition

Dr Kasper Lægring – Aarhus University

For the modernist avant-gardes, as well as for an art history moulded in its image, it seemed self-evident that sentimentality was a bad thing, both ethically and aesthetically. Lately, however, theorists have begun to revisit the sentimental art of the nineteenth century, and to question the claims that sentimental works of art can have no share in empathy. Using two key terms related to empathy in a phenomenological sense—beweeglijkheid and Einfühlung—this paper seeks to deepen our understanding of what sentimentality in painting entails.

Kasper Lægring is a theorist of architecture and the arts and is currently a New Carlsberg Postdoctoral Fellow in art history at Aarhus University, Denmark. He holds degrees in architecture (PhD, Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Architecture; MSc, University of Pennsylvania) and art history (, University of Copenhagen). His research interests broadly include emotions and empathy in painting, meaning in architecture, and modernism and postmodernism in urbanism. He has lectured, chaired conference sessions, and published widely on these topics. He is a contributor to A Cultural History of the Avant-Garde in the Nordic Countries (Brill/Rodopi, 2016–22) and The Contested Territory of Architectural Theory (Routledge, 2022), and his monograph Nelson Goodman and Modern Architecture: A Belated Encounter is forthcoming with Routledge. Together with Wayne Franits, he will be editing a themed issue of Gouden Eeuw: New Perspectives on Dutch Seventeenth-Century Art on emotions in Dutch seventeenth-century art.

Sculpting Empathy: Representing the Destitute in Nineteenth-Century British Sculpture

Dr Claire Jones – University of Birmingham

This paper identifies a shift in sculpture in nineteenth-century Britain: an attempt by sculptors to represent aspects of modern life, which in turn enabled new subjects, narratives, and experiences to be articulated in sculpture. I focus on sculptures of the poor and destitute. I explore how these sculptures addressed lived contemporary experience, with the intention of prompting an empathetic connection between the viewer and the represented subject, and how they might also form a potential space for empathy today.

Claire Jones is associate professor in art history at the University of Birmingham, UK. Her research focuses on nineteenth-century sculpture, with a particular emphasis on the intersection of sculpture and the decorative, as well as discourses of making, display, and creative engagements with historic art. Publications include Sculptors and Design Reform in France, 1848 to 1895: Sculpture and the Decorative Arts (Ashgate, 2014); and Sculpture and the Decorative in Britain and Europe: Seventeenth Century to Contemporary (Bloomsbury Visual Arts, 2020), co-edited with Imogen Hart. She is currently completing her next book, Victorian Sculpture: In Pursuit of Modern Sentiment, which explores how sculptors in nineteenth-century Britain attempted to engage with contemporary concerns and feelings, including representations of the everyday and creating empathetic connections between subjects and audiences.

Empathic Projection with the Optical Lantern: The Case of Temperance Propaganda (1880-1920)

Dr Bart G. Moens – Université libre de Bruxelles & University of Antwerp
Anse De Weerdt – Université libre de Bruxelles & University of Antwerp

Concentrating on a case of anti-alcohol propaganda by means of the optical lantern around the turn of the twentieth century, this contribution aims to scrutinise the notion of empathic projection (Fesmire 2003). Through a live optical lantern performance, we will explore the (intended) affective and empathic involvement with these projected images on a formal level (discussing techniques from the arts, theatre, and photography) and on a societal level (individually and collectively).

Bart G. Moens is postdoctoral researcher at the Université libre de Bruxelles and at the University of Antwerp within the framework of the ERC-funded project ‘Science at the Fair: Performing Knowledge and Technology in Western Europe, 1850–1914.’ His research concerns late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century visual culture from media archaeological and art historical perspectives. In 2023, Moens completed his PhD entitled ‘Emotions on Demand: Melodramatic Structures of Feeling in Optical Lantern Culture (1890s–1920s),’ as part of the EOS-funded research project ‘B-Magic: The Magic Lantern and its Cultural Impact as a Visual Mass Medium in Belgium,’ which he is currently reworking into a book.

Anse De Weerdt obtained her master’s degree in History in 2021 at the University of Antwerp. Her master’s thesis focused on perceptions of Belgian solidarity with Palestine in the 1960s and 1970s. She is now a joint Ph.D. student at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and the University of Antwerp (UAntwerpen) on the project ‘Travelling colonial pictures: circulation of colonial magic lantern images between science, politics, and religion in Belgium (1885-1950).’ As part of the EOS-funded B-magic project, her research explores the role of the magic lantern in shaping perceptions and narratives related to Belgian colonialism during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Envisioned Projection and Projected Vision: The Agency of the Image in Early Soviet Art Praxis

Amir Saifullin – University of Zurich

This video has not been included upon request of the speaker.

My presentation focuses on projection as an artistic mode for organising political vision, as developed by the Projectionists—an understudied Soviet avant-garde movement from the 1920s. I explore how, within their praxis, the image mediates the relationship between projected vision and envisioned projection, and emerges as a reflection of how the world is perceived, thus becoming a means to transform perception. I then critically evaluate projection as a visual strategy, examining both the political and creative possibilities discovered by the Projectionists, as well as the limitations exposed by their work.

Amir Saifullin is a researcher based between Rome and Berlin. Saifullin studied philosophy and art history at the Freie Universität Berlin, along with visual and Renaissance culture at the Warburg Institute in London. He works at the intersection of anthropology and the histories of art, science, and philosophy, with a particular focus on exploring how various visual forms of translation and mediation communicate and shape human cosmologies, politics, and communities. Currently, he is pursuing these interests while writing his PhD dissertation on projection as revolutionary vision in early-Soviet art at the University of Zurich.

With these Hands: An Examination of the Context and Legacy of Russell Lee’s Most Famous and Most Empathetic Photograph

Professor James R. Swensen – Brigham Young University, Utah

On his first travelling assignment for the New Deal’s Resettlement Administration (later known as the Farm Security Administration), Russell Lee photographed two homesteaders, Mr and Mrs Ostermeyer, as they were being evicted from their farm on a cold December day in 1936. One of Lee’s pictures was a close up of Theresia Ostermeyer’s hands. This deeply empathetic image—a powerful synecdoche of a life of hard work, hardship, and pain—became an icon of the Great Depression. This paper examines the context of Lee’s photograph as well as the ways in which it has continued to resonate with audiences and image-makers.

James R. Swensen is professor of art history and the history of photography at Brigham Young University, Utah, US. His research interests include documentary photography, American photography, and the visual representation of the American West. He is the author of several articles which have appeared in History of Photography, TransAtlantica: Revue d’Études Américaines, American Indian Quarterly, and The European Journal of American Culture, among others. He is also the author of two books: Picturing Migrants: The Grapes of Wrath and New Deal Documentary Photography (University of Oklahoma Press, 2015), and In a Rugged Land: Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, and the Three Mormon Towns Collaboration, 1953–1954 (University of Utah Press, 2018). He also co-authored Returning Home: Diné Creative Works from the Intermountain Indian School (University of Arizona Press, 2021).

The Semiotics of the Kitchen

Professor Stella Viljoen – Stellenbosch University

This paper considers three artists who utilise photography in their affective documentation of the kitchen. How does their art move the viewer towards a political understanding of taste and culture? How do these artists critique and construct narratives of kitsch(ens) and what is the relationship between ‘distinction’ and ‘empathy’? Might sexy, consumable, and relatable images still function as semiotic provocateurs or agentic trouble-makers or is kitsch necessarily trite and impotent? The paper is a means of tracking empathy in the feminist archive.

Stella Viljoen is associate professor in visual studies in the department of visual arts at Stellenbosch University, South Africa. She has an MA in history of art and a PhD in media studies. She has written widely on representational cultures and how these index gender norms and political aspirations. Her current interest is in the capitalist imagination. She is a fellow of the Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study.

A Film Jar—On the Questions of Power and Innocence in Documentary Film Practice

Dr Ira Goryainova – Royal Institute for Theatre, Cinema and Sound (RITCS), Brussels

This video has not been included upon request of the speaker.

Starting with the premise that any documentary portrayal has something dominating and destructive in its nature, this performance—unfolding itself in the montage space of a filmmaker—tackles the relationship between the director and her protagonist, the construction and consequences of the gaze, as well as the vacuum of a film, which takes a real-life person hostage, engulfs, and seals them in forever.

Ira Goryainova is a film director, audiovisual artist, and researcher based in Brussels. The relationship between body, camera, screen, and spectator is her main area of interest, which she explores in essay- and montage films, video installations, and performances. Thematically her focus is on the body under extreme conditions—such as illness, death, and suffering—and how they can be read as political metaphors while still conveying explicit bodily, non-narrative meanings. Goryainova’s work has been shown at IDFA, Hot Docs, Visions du Réel, Thessaloniki Film Festival, Artdocfest, Argos, Halle für Kunst Steiermark, ISELP, RIDM, Imagine Science Film Festival, Deutsches Theater Berlin, among others. Currently she is a postdoctoral researcher, as well as a hybrid and documentary film teacher at the Royal Institute for Theatre, Cinema and Sound (RITCS), Brussels.

Counter Shots

Christina Varvia – Forensic Architecture, Goldsmiths, University of London & Aarhus University

On the 14 June 2023, a fishing vessel carrying up to 750 people seeking asylum in Europe sank off the coast of Greece causing the death of up to 600 people. The only vessel that was present at the time of the sinking was a Greek Coastguard ship. While Frontex planes equipped with thermal cameras and commercial vessels were ready to assist, the Greek Coastguard sent them away. When the survivors arrived on land, in Pylos, their phones were confiscated by the authorities. At the same time the media produced a particular image of the shipwreck, emphasising the human bodies in distress. The depictions of migrants and refugees are always politically charged. (In)visibilities cause a particular regime of (im)mobility in the frontier zones of Europe. The European borders are both hyper-visibilised and black boxed for military and anti-migration purposes, and visuality creates an uneven political field of access to the border spaces.

In this talk, Christina Varvia presents a series of cases by Forensic Architecture, where the dominant power of images is met by counter shots from the ground. Itinerant witnesses turn their gaze back to the state and help us see the way visual and biopolitical regimes stratify and racialise human life. Witnesses use social media to document how they are being shot or pushed back at the borders. Activists demand access to footage, while researchers dissect images pixel by pixel to extract their informational value. The operative life of images can be found on the way that images travel and mediate our understandings of events of conflict. Image-sections carrying evidentiary traces get assembled and re-assembled in different models in our news cycles and in our brains, forming the nebulas of truth.

Christina Varvia is currently a research fellow and formerly the deputy director of Forensic Architecture. She was trained as an architect and has taught at the Architectural Association, London. She is currently a lecturer at the Centre for Research Architecture, at Goldsmiths, University of London, and is pursuing her PhD at Aarhus University, Denmark, where she has received the Novo Nordisk Foundation Mads Øvlisen PhD Scholarship; she is also a Fellow at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. She is a founding member and the chair of the board of Forensis.

November 18, 2023

‘Composite Images’ and Counter-Forensics

Dr Antigoni Memou – University of East London

This video has not been included upon request of the speaker.

This talk examines Forensic Oceanography’s interdisciplinary methodology for reconstructing ‘composite images,’ which attest to the systemic violence against migrant people at European Union’s maritime borders. The talk questions the role these images can play in holding accountable those responsible for human rights’ violations and the death of migrant people. The civic practice of ‘counter-forensics’ will be further discussed by asking whether new forms of political resistance to border violence can be constituted by rendering systemic violence and fields of pro-migration struggles visible.

Antigoni Memou (PhD, Courtauld Institute of Art; MA, University of Southampton) is senior lecturer in art history and the course leader of the BA (Hons) Photography at the department of architecture and visual arts at the University of East London. She has published in the journals Third Text, Philosophy of Photography, Photographies, Art and the Public Sphere, and in edited collections. She is the author of Photography and Social Movements: From the Globalisation of the Movement (1968) to the Movement Against Globalisation (2001) (Manchester University Press, 2013) and co-author of Resist! The 1960s Protests, Photography and Visual Legacy (Lannoo, 2018). Her research interests cut across art and activism, the history and theory of photography, socially engaged artistic practices, and critical issues of contemporary display.

Presenting or Representing: Artistic Empathy to the Test of Contemporary Migrations

Dr Paul Bernard-Nouraud – Aix-Marseille University

Over the last decade, countless initiatives have been taken in the artistic field to address contemporary migration. Many commentators have criticised these projects for either lacking empathy or for displaying too much empathy. One of the main practical and theoretical issues that emerges in relation to such artistic approaches is the dilemma of presenting or representing migrations and migrants. This lecture aims to frame this debate and its theoretical concerns by focusing on several significant artistic proposals.

Paul Bernard-Nouraud is an art historian and art critic, based in Paris. He received his PhD from the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS), Paris. He is currently teaching at the arts department of Aix-Marseille University. Among his publications are: Figurer l’autre: Essai sur la figure du ‘musulman’ dans les camps de concentration nazis (Kimé, 2013); Sur les œuvres silencieuses: Contribution à l’étude de l’art d’après Auschwitz (Pétra, 2017). He is currently preparing a book on the representations of migration in contemporary art titled Échelles de l’exil.


berte & harmey

berte & harmey co-presented a lecture performance using a set of images from two research trips to the Białowieża forest in Poland—a site of fragile natural habitats, which also acts as a hostile, militarised environment for people on the move. How can the particular tools of art be used to navigate, interrogate, and reflect on such a charged context? Can images help us to engage with the experiential world of people on the move—whom we do not see? How can we empathise with an invisible subject?

berte & harmey is an occasional artist duo formed by Cliona Harmey and Filip Berte to share research and to explore ideas around spatial politics, critical geography, historical legacies, and socio-technical systems of exclusion and inclusion. berte & harmey showed their work as part of Tulca 2022 (Galway, Ireland), at Hugh Lane Gallery (Open House Dublin 2022), NCAD Gallery (Dublin) and BLANCO (Ghent).

Filip Berte is an architect and visual artist who explores space from multiple perspectives looking at issues such as migration, visibility, liminality, and the concept of borders. A critical engagement is integral to his interdisciplinary and process-oriented art practice. He considers his role as an artist as the one of a mediator, tackling questions of hospitality, polarisation, observation, surveillance, and control. With his work in general, Berte is trying to offer a reflective and poetic form of resistance.

 Cliona Harmey works primarily with technology subtly exploring the politics inherent in both contemporary and historical socio-technical systems using material exploration and hands-on artistic practice to try to understand and reveal their materiality and logic. She is interested in different ways of making immaterial and mutable data tangible and the inscription processes of its capture and production.

Talking Back to History: Violent Pasts and the Politics of Representation in the Work of Nnenna Onuoha and Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński

Dr Birgit Eusterschulte – Freie Universität Berlin

This video has not been included upon request of the speaker.

In the exploration of the colonial past and coloniality in contemporary art, the question of how to deal with depictions of violence is of great importance. Focusing on filmic works by Nnenna Onuoha and Belinda Kazeem-Kamiński, this lecture examines different artistic strategies of countering history and the respective ways of dealing with images of violent pasts. A central question is how do artists talk back to the violence of images and involve the viewer in reflecting on the dilemmas and politics of representation.

Birgit Eusterschulte is an art historian and postdoctoral research associate at the Collaborative Research Center 1512 ‘Intervening Arts’ at the Freie Universität Berlin After studying art history and German literature she initially worked as a curator. In 2017, she received her PhD in art history from the Freie Universität Berlin with a thesis on materiality in conceptual art; from 2017 to 2019 she was a research associate for the Einstein Research Project Autonomy and Functionalization of Art at the Berlin University of the Arts (UdK) with a focus on politically and socially engaged art and exhibition practice in Berlin after 1990; her current research project, History as Material? Artistic Historicizing as Intervening Practice, asks how different models of artistic historiography intervene in dominant narratives as a form of methodical unlearning. Recent publications include Robert Barry: Materialität und Konzeptkunst (Brill/Wilhelm Fink, 2021); Funktionen der Künste (J. B. Metzler, 2021; co-editor Judith Siegmund et al.); Involvierte Autonomie: Künstlerische Praxis zwischen Engagement und Eigenlogik (transcript, 2022; open access; co-editor Christian Krüger).

Images as Empathic Agents in the Current Neuroimaging Research on Hysteria/FND

Dr Paula Muhr – Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

Hysteria is no longer thought to exist. But since the 2000s, there has been a revival of medical research into hysteria, renamed as functional neurological disorder (FND), using state-of-the-art neuroimaging technologies. I argue that by linking FND patients’ previous traumatic experiences to visualisable pathological changes in brain structure and function, brain images serve as agents of concern. By grounding the previously contested symptoms into trauma-induced neuroplastic changes, these images provide visual evidence for the reality of patients’ experience of illness, which had long been dismissed as simulation.

Paula Muhr is a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for History of Art and Architecture, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and a visual artist. She studied visual arts, art history, literary theory, and physics before receiving her PhD in visual history from the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin in 2021, published as From Photography to fMRI: Epistemic Functions of Images in Medical Research on Hysteria (transcript, 2022; open-access). In her doctoral dissertation, Muhr investigated active roles that diverse types of images have played in generating medical knowledge of hysteria across various historical contexts. Her interdisciplinary research is at the intersection of visual studies, image theory, media studies, science and technology studies, medical humanities, and the history and philosophy of science. She examines knowledge-producing functions of new imaging and visualisation technologies in natural sciences, ranging from neuroscience to medicine to black-hole physics.

Eyes That Do Not See

Dámaso Randulfe – Royal College of Art, London

This video has not been included upon request of the speaker.

Two exhumations frame the stratigraphy of the Spanish Empire. On one end, the sixteenth-century extraction of Sumaq Urqu’s silver violently inaugurates a new geological and civilisational era. On the other end, the ongoing search for thousands of mass graves unearths the mechanisms of fascist terror in twentieth-century Spain. Exploring the entanglement of these pivotal exhumations, this lecture charts a fossil ecology inscribed between the surface of the image and the depth of the earth.

Dámaso Randulfe is an architect and artist based in London. Their work investigates the technologies, ecologies, and mythologies shaping contemporary ways of seeing and inhabiting the earth. They are an editor of Migrant Journal, a publication series on the spatial politics of more-than-human migrations, and a faculty member at the School of Architecture, Royal College of Art and the School of Art, Architecture, and Design, London Metropolitan University. Their work and various collaborative projects have been presented at the Oslo Architecture Triennale, Triennale de Milano, Index Biennial of Art and Technology, Design Museum, Tate Modern, and The Showroom. They are currently an AHRC-funded PhD candidate at the School of Architecture, Royal College of Art.

Seeing with Your Own Eyes? When the Inter-American Court of Human Rights Visits Indigenous Territories

Nina Valerie Kolowratnik – Ghent University

In 2012, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, based in Costa Rica, decided to exchange legal robes for backpacks and visit for the first time the land of the Sarayaku people in the Ecuadorian Amazon so its judges could ‘see with their own eyes’ how the community there was affected by alleged human-rights abuses. The court has since organised five more in-situ visits to Indigenous territories. This talk discusses how the court’s first case involving Indigenous peoples living in voluntary isolation, the ongoing case of the Tagaeri and Taromenane Indigenous people vs the Ecuadorian state, challenges the court’s approach to ‘seeing’ evidence—both conceptually and practically.

Nina Valerie Kolowratnik is an architect and a PhD candidate in law at the Human Rights Centre, Faculty of Law and Criminology at Ghent University. Her research focuses on Indigenous peoples’ knowledge in human-rights courts and the impact of the evidentiary regime on access to justice and knowledge representation. She is part of the larger ERC-funded project DISSECT: Evidence in International Human Rights Adjudication. She holds an MSc in Critical, Curatorial, and Conceptual Practices in Architecture from Columbia University and a BSc and MSc in architecture from Graz University of Technology. Following her postgraduate studies, she founded a research and advocacy practice that develops spatial visualisation systems that operate as translational tools in the context of forced migration, cultural claims to territory, and Indigenous rights. She is the author of the book The Language of Secret Proof: Indigenous Truth and Representation (Sternberg Press, 2019) and she is currently in Ecuador for a year to conduct fieldwork for her PhD.