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Kelvin Lau Going back to where I came from (as instructed) 2011.

Echo Chamber 2: Emerging Research on Photography

Thursday 26 March 2015, 6pm
Centre for Contemporary Photography
Free event, no bookings required.

CCP's Echo Chamber represents a series of occasional, ongoing public programs showcasing current emerging research in all areas of photography, including historical research, technology, communications and contemporary discussion.

Applications to present research for future Echo Chamber public programs are welcome.


Pippa Milne
Curator, Centre for Contemporary Photography


Kelvin Lau
Exploring emotional distress in young people from a migrant background through photo-elicitation interviewing

There is currently a lack of information available on why young people in Australia do not seek help for mental health concerns, despite having the highest rates of self-reported mental disorder. Even less is known about the burden of distress in those from a migrant background. Novel qualitative research methods may help address the knowledge gap concerning this burden, as well as assist with identifying barriers to help-seeking.

This project seeks an in-depth understanding of how migration and cultural difference can shape the experiences of emotional distress in young people from a migrant background in Australia through the use of photo-elicitation interviewing. This is a method where participants take photographs to represent lived experience, and then discuss their meaning in subsequent interviews. It also seeks to identify and address the methodological and epistemological uncertainties of applying photo-elicitation in transcultural mental health research by evaluating the research process through critical reflexivity.

Kelvin Lau is a PhD candidate at the Department of General Practice, Melbourne Medical School, University of Melbourne. He completed a Master of Public Health at the University of Melbourne in 2013, and currently works as a medical practitioner at Headspace Collingwood. He is interested in how culture and society can shape our understandings of health and illness.

Tim Alves
Photography of Activist Movements

Photography has a capacity to contribute to activist movements. John Miller photographed the anti-apartheid protests in New Zealand in 1981. Recently he has composed a two-channel video that presents, or perhaps represents, his documentary practise, which was embedded in activism, as a historical account. His video is compelling today because the future that the activist movement projected thirty years ago can be studied historically. Miller's images partake in both projection and retrospection. Judith Joy Ross photographed the American activist movement that opposed the so-called coalition of the willing's war on Iraq in 2006. Like Miller, she envisioned her work as a photographer would have some historical capacity. Joel Sternfeld photographed people that participated in the protests against the 2001 G8 summit in Genoa, Italy. He set out to make images that were distinctive from the journalistic style photographs that mediate demonstrations and protests through the narrowing filter of newspaper agendas. Sternfeld engages in a concept of the active capacity of documentary photography in a way that is similar to Miller and Ross. This capacity of photography, which these projects suppose and accept, is a rich theme for discussion.

Tim Alves is a PhD candidate in the Facility of Art, Design and Architecture at Monash University. His research focuses on artists' images of protests, demonstrations and rallies in the 21st century and he examines recent theoretical efforts towards affirming parallel capacities of art and politics.

Colleen Boyle
You Saw the Whole of the Moon: Imagination, Photography, and the Moon

The way in which the Moon is perceived has changed over time. Photography has played a major role in this, from shaky beginnings through telescopes to the latest high resolution images from NASA. However, images produced by technology remain far from 'complete', instead they act as fragments or models, providing information on which the viewer imaginatively builds. How the Moon is perceived is therefore symbiotically linked to the images made of it, and a complete view of the Moon is only constructed within the non-localized zone of the imagination.

Colleen Boyle is currently completing her PhD by project at RMIT University where she is investigating how the imagination is used in conjunction with photographs to perceive unseen aspects of reality. Her research interests include theories of perception, representation, and scientific observation (particularly space exploration). Initially trained as a printmaker at Monash University, Colleen's practice has diversified into the intersection of photography and sculpture. When she grows up she hopes to be an astronaut.

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