Have you ever wanted to challenge existing narratives about the past? If so, archives could be the place to start. Over the next four days, the Wellcome collection will be hosting a series of events that will explore the links between art, activism, politics, health and print. At its core will be the production of DAYLIGHT, a collaborative artwork in the form of a newspaper that explores the presence of women through their writing, art and ideas. Participants can bring a favourite quote to work with or explore texts about women from their archives. They’ll learn how to set letterpress type and operate the Farley proofing press before setting inspirational women’s names and words in print, creating pages for DAYLIGHT.
On Friday evening, there’ll be an discussion led by the founders of the Women of Colour Index Reading Group, who will talk about this unique collection of slides and papers collated by artist Rita Keegan that charts the emergence of women of colour artists during the ‘critical decades’ of the 1980s and 1990s. For some of them, the archive is the only written record of their work. Reading group sessions aim to improve the visibility of women of colour artists whilst using material in the archive to generate discussion, thought and practice around current social and political concerns. Friday’s session will focus on Joy Gregory, who will talk about her work as a photographer and how the Index acts as a ‘time capsule’, ensuring that this moment in history is not overlooked or forgotten.
Are their voices you feel are missing from the archival record? Is this something you’d like to explore within our own collections?