Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa position appears to be one of prejudice, based on history, perhaps before writing his scathing critic he should have first contacted the artist to clarify their position, rather than simply damning their work. I believe Hoek’s intentions were honourable and as he points out as photographers and artist work can be about the awkwardness/tensions of the subject matter, this after all makes the work interesting and important.
There are always more than one way to look at anything, we must however, always be careful to look objectively and try not to let our prejudices get in the way. We must accept that we are all guilty of prejudices and having ‘isms’ even perhaps racism in one kind or another. Our first steps to change is to acknowledge these faults and only then can we sensibly address them. I feel that at present the current trend to address racial equality is through aggression such as the, ‘BLACK LIVES MATTER’ movement/protests that, thanks to social media, has swept like an uncontrollable fire across the world. But shouldn’t the slogan be, ‘ALL LIVES MATTER’? Are these protesters simply trading one anti-racist sentiment for a new racist sentiment?
So far my photography and my artwork has not tested any social or political issues and I have not thought about it up to now. A manifesto may be a good idea to create to keep as a guide and to maintain a professional discipline.
- To respect the sitter/models identity.
- Not to use a sitter’s/model’s images that in anyway may harm them.
- To try to always remain objective.
- To carefully consider any possible alternative readings for my work.
- To remain honest and true.
- To maintain a good ethical professional practice at all times.