The archive has been the space of intervention from the beginning. One of the few spaces, reservoirs of memory, for diasporic subjects is the archive.
John Akomfrah (2014)
Benjamin E.I. Lubbock
Edited by Maria Elena Carpintero Torres-Quevedo and Rianna Walcott
Art by Maïa Walcott https://maiawalcott98.wixsite.com/mysite
Memory and the moving image are John Akomfrah’s materials. In The Unfinished Conversation, a three-screen video installation, his subject matter is the formation of identity, which, for individuals struggling to define themselves in their social contexts, is a matter of urgency. It is not easy to explain how identities are created, and there are few who have considered the matter in greater depth than Stuart Hall, around whom the film revolves. Born in Jamaica before immigrating to Oxford, Hall became editor-in-chief of the New Left Review and a founding figure of the New Left movement. He was an activist, regularly televised for his analyses of media reports, and co-authored seminal texts such as The Popular Arts (1964), which advanced the claim that film, media and pop culture should be taken seriously as objects of study. But what he was arguably most renowned for were his theories of identity: “Identity is formed at the intersection between the political and the personal” (Hall, 2013).