Text full multimedia monochrome

First time here?

Find out more about how The Lecture List works.

Coronavirus situation update

Our lecture organisers may or may not have had time to update their events with cancellation notices. Clearly social gatherings are to be avoided and that includes lectures. STAY AT HOME FOLKS, PLEASE.


Find out what you can do to keep The Lecture List online

Learning To Look Away

A panel discussion exploring the ethical and emotional questions raised by the exhibition of The Incommensurable Banner by Thomas Hirschhorn.

Learning To Look Away is led by a panel of leading writers, critics and journalists and forms part of Fabrica's programme for the Brighton Photo Biennial 2008, exploring photographic images of war, their making, use and circulation, and their currency in contemporary society.

It will be chaired by journalist and writer Fiachra Gibbons and include contributions from Adrian Searle, chief art critic of The Guardian, Ed Vulliamy, the journalist who revealed the existence of Serbian death camps and award-winning war photographer Sean Smith.

The Incommensurable Banner raises many difficult and contradictory responses from the people who see it – anger, sympathy, grief and repugnance – the feelings come tumbling one after the other in a swell of mixed emotion. It is a raw challenge to much of our thinking, or to be more precise, our avoidance of thinking about what happens in the wars we have become embroiled in.

Our panel, some of whom have been witness to some of the bloodiest conflicts of the past 20 years, will discuss the ethical and emotional mantraps the banner presents. Have these pictures been taken out of context by the artist, or have they found their real context for the first time? Where is art's place in a time of war, and are increasing taboos around death in the consumer societies of northern Europe and America hobbling not just artists but proper news reporting?


Adrian Searle | talks
Ed Vulliamy | talks
Sean Smith | talks


Date and Time:

4 October 2008 at 6:00 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



40 Duke Street
+44 1273 77 86 46

More at Fabrica...




Available from:

Admission is free but booking is advised
+44 (0)1273 778646

Register to tell a friend about this lecture.


If you would like to comment about this lecture, please register here.


Any ad revenue is entirely reinvested into the Lecture List's operating fund