Black Lunch Table pop up photo studio in Chicago, IL.
Black Face: Strategies for missing images from art biographies and the ethics of WikiCommons
We estimate less than 15% of articles about Black visual artists have images. As a project, Black Lunch Table (BLT) project creates a space to encourage people of color and women to join the Wikimedia movement while also creating spaces for all editors to focus on gaps in coverage on Wikimedia. We mobilize the creation and improvement of a specific set of Wikimedia documents that pertain to the lives and works of Black artists. Outside of Wikipedia the project creates an online searchable oral history archive focused on filling gaps in art historical records.
Over the past year Black Lunch Table has hosted pop-up portrait studios in an effort to make WikiCommons more equitable. Through this initiative we invite professional photographers to take portraits of artists for WikiCommons.
How do we fill the gap in WikiCommons and visualize all human knowledge without repeating systematic bias and turning it into the racist coverage of an old National Geographic magazine?
For this presentation/workshop, we would
like to share the work that we are doing for WikiCommons as a user group focused on visibility of black artists as well as the politics of images, especially as it relates to open access licenses, copyright and authorship issues, and global post-colonial issues. The discussion will also relate to the ethics of archives/museum holdings, audio recording, documentary photography, photo contests, social media and crowdsourcing.
The second half of this presentation will include an open problem-solving charrette-style workshop
where the audience is invited to strategize together for a more equitable WikiCommons.
Artist Derrick Adams, Brooklyn, NY at Black Lunch Table pop up photo studio.
This session will address the conference theme — Wikimedia, Free Knowledge and the Sustainable Development Goals — in the following manner:
(SDG 9,11,17) Within the Wikimedia ecology, images are the most universal piece of information since they do not depend on language, and certainly, they are central to GLAM institutions. In order for our communities to see themselves reflected fairly, we all must examine the ways in which biases in imaging must be addressed. This supports (SDG 4, 5, 10) goals and underscores Wiki’s central tenet of free and fair knowledge for all, knowledge can only be truly free and fair when the images shared and the histories/articles/representations being shared represent the whole of the people.
At the end of the session, the following will have been achieved:
Artist Dindga McCannon at Black Lunch Table pop up photo studio, Philadelphia, PA
- Understand the necessity of including not only creating articles on Black artists but including their portraits and images of their work.
- Learn practical strategies for bringing photo initiatives into an institution or partnership
- Develop some best practices and methods through tutorials/case studies
- Share ideas and experiences around GLAM collaboration
- Connect with experienced and new Wikimedians working with GLAM institutions on these type of projects.
- Eliza Myrie, Black Lunch Table Project Manager
- Jina Valentine, Black Lunch Table Lead Organizer
- Black Lunch Table User group
- United States
- Wikimedians of Chicago
- Wikimedia NYC
Each Space at Wikimania 2019 will have specific format requests. The program design prioritises submissions which are future-oriented and directly engage the audience. The format of this submission is a:
If other than 20 minutes, specify how long
- Discussion-based training
- Workshop to identify and try to solve problem
Artist Danny Simmons, Philadelphia, PA in Black Lunch Table pop up photo studio.
60 minutes would be ideal, but could fit into 45 minutes if necessary.
The session will work best with these conditions:
- Room: Any type of room with projector and wall space
- Audience: 15-50, no prior knowledge necessary
- Recording: not appropriate as we will likely be moving around the room during second half. Otherwise fine.