Still Searching…

The conditions governing the digital world have led to a radical diversification not only in photography but also in the theory that underpins it and the history that is written about it. Photographic media and forms are incorporated into complex tech technological, capitalist and ideological networks; the experts who are conducting scholarly research into the role of photographic images thus come from very different disciplines. The expansion of the discourse surrounding these images is also reflected in Still Searching…, the blog on photographic theory that was initiated by Fotomuseum Winterthur in 2012 and which subjects all aspects of photography and its role in visual culture to interdisciplinary scrutiny. The bloggers invited to the online format operate at the forefront of research and enhance our awareness of current issues that are relevant to photography.

Blog series: Very Long Tables: A First Sounding of Photography of the War in Ukraine.

Annette Vowinckel | 20.05. – 30.06.2022
Very Long Tables: A First Sounding of Photography of the War in Ukraine.

Since the end of February, the news and social media have been flooded with images of Ukraine. Some were taken by professional photojournalists working for agencies such as Associated Press, for newspapers such as The New York Times, or as freelancers. Some were taken by Ukrainian citizens and posted on Instagram. Others were taken by presidential staff photographers. Over the next weeks, my blog series will examine such images—ranging from everyday snapshots to official records of events, from traditional documentary photographs to memes and TikToks—against the backdrop of visual war rhetorics and image circulation.

Photo Politics: Ukraine vs. Russia

Friday, 20.05.2022
<div>The current war in Ukraine was launched by Russia in February 2014, with an attack on Ukrainian territory and the subsequent annexation of the Crimean Peninsula. From February 24, 2022, the Russian offensive reached new heights, with simultaneous strikes by the Russian Army on the north, east, and south of Ukraine, and moves to take Kyiv.</div>

Zelensky vs. Putin

Wednesday, 01.06.2022
<div>Since the start of Russia’s most recent offensive in Ukraine, the respective presidents have been in the public eye, worldwide, in various settings. Putin is usually aspiring to look very much the statesman, wearing a suit and tie, and seated at a desk or a table.</div>


Wednesday, 15.06.2022
<div>Photojournalism has a long tradition of showing atrocities. We have seen images of wounded soldiers, bombed-out civilians, human remains, and sometimes, imminent death. Since February, we have seen many more. The first I remember is that of four Ukrainians lethally shot while trying to escape from the city of Irpin. </div>

Visual Storytelling

Thursday, 30.06.2022
<div>Since February, the number of photo stories and photo diaries from Ukraine has multiplied. Some of them have been compiled by professional photojournalists, others by amateur photographers who felt an urge to show what was happening in their cities and villages. These photo reports give us insights into the daily life of a society at war. </div>

The War’s Visual Waif: Loose Ends

Wednesday, 13.07.2022
<div>Most of the pictures from Ukraine that I have seen since the end of February are easy to label. “Propaganda,” “atrocities,” “destruction,” “resistance,” “daily life,” “heroes,” “scoundrels,” or “government communication” would be suitable tags. Some pictures that I have encountered, however, are harder to place, and they must remain loose ends in my blog series. </div>