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Exploring Revolutionary Histories through the Eyes of Contemporary Artists

Self-Determination: A Global Perspective is the culmination of a three-year research project focusing on the new nation-states that emerged in the wake of the First World War. To offer reflection on how contemporary artists today, reckon with the legacies of this period, this special roundtable conversation, brings together national and international artists to introduce the thinking and making of new and existing works that comprise the museum wide exhibition at IMMA, presenting a timely exploration of our connected historical landscape with the hindsight of a century later.

Chaired and moderated by IMMA director, Annie Fletcher; participating artists include members of Array Collective (Emma Campbell / Laura O’Connor), Jasmina Cibic, Declan Clarke, Minna Henriksson, İz Öztat and Larissa Sansour. Artists share insights into the ways their work engages with movements and ideas of self-determination, offering a range of perspectives on the unforeseen consequences of nation building, imperial rule, and the intergenerational quest for identity, within today’s complex global terrain.

This talk is followed by exhibition launch, reception and late gallery viewing, from 6.30pm onwards, and marks the next phase of this museum wide project opening at IMMA.

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About Artists

Array Collective
Array Collective (Turner Prize winners 2021) are a group of individual artists rooted in Belfast, who join together to create collaborative actions in response to the sociopolitical issues affecting Northern Ireland. Array’s studios and project space in the city centre acts as a base for the collective, however the participating artists are not limited to studio holders. Collective members: Sighle Bhreathnach-Cashell, Sinéad Bhreathnach-Cashell, Jane Butler, Emma Campbell, Alessia Cargnelli, Mitch Conlon, Clodagh Lavelle, Grace McMurray, Stephen Millar, Laura O’Connor, Thomas Wells. More details here

Jasmina Cibic
Jasmina Cibic (b. Ljubljana 1979) works in film, sculpture, performance and installation to explore ‘soft power’ – how political rhetoric is deployed through art and architecture, particularly examining how cultural production is used by the state to communicate certain principles and aspirations. Through unfolding the complex entanglements of art, gender and state power, the artist encourages viewers to consider the strategies employed in the construction of national culture. More details here

Declan Clarke
Declan Clarke is an Irish artist, now based in Berlin. Over 15 years, he has developed an impressive oeuvre of film work focussing on themes of modernity, conflict and the human stories behind major upheavals in 20th century history. He is particularly interested in post revolution societies and uses a personal viewpoint to tell complex historical narratives. His work has been shown at Tate Britain, Home Manchester, and Serpentine Gallery London, among many other places. He has been awarded residencies at MoMA/PS1, Saatchi Fellowship and IMMA. Three newly commissioned film works are currently on show in a major solo exhibition at Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane. More details here

Minna Henriksson
Minna Henriksson (b. 1976, Oulu, Finland, lives in Helsinki) is a visual artist working with a disparate range of tools including text, drawing, painting and linocut. She studied art in Brighton, Helsinki and Malmö. Henriksson’s work relates to leftist, anti-racist and feminist struggles. Her works are often based on extensive archival research and draw from real historical events aiming to bring forth marginalisation and oppression, and to highlight positions of power. Dealing with historical cases she aims to politicise processes in the present that seem neutral and inevitable. A thematic in her work is the ideological nature of history writing itself. Henriksson is also interested in exploring the language of political art and modes of representation. More details here

İz Öztat
In her collective and individual artistic practice spanning diverse media defined by her reseach, İz Öztat explores the persistence of violent histories through forms, materials, space and language. She responds to absences in official historiography through spectral, intergenerational and speculative fictions. İz Öztat fabricates the (auto)biography of Zişan (1894-1970), who appears to her as a historical figure, a ghost, and an alter ego. She takes on Zişan’s archives and interprets them through her practice to construct a complex temporality of action that enables the suppressed past to intervene in the increasingly authoritarian present. The values and methodologies driving her practice have been articulated in relation to struggles against the taming of running waters for profit and progress, queer desire and consensual negotiation of power. More details here

Larissa Sansour
Larissa Sansour was born in 1973 in East Jerusalem, Palestine, and studied fine arts in London, New York City and Copenhagen. Central to her work is the push and pull between fiction and reality. In her recent works, she uses science fiction to address social and political issues. Working mainly with film, Sansour also produces installations, photography, and sculpture and studied Fine Art in Copenhagen, London and New York. She represented Denmark at the 58th Venice Biennale. Recent solo exhibitions include Whitworth Gallery in Manchester, KINDL in Berlin, Copenhagen Contemporary in Denmark and Dar El-Nimer in Beirut. She lives and works in London. More details here

About Exhibition

28 Oct 2023 – 21 April 2024 / Garden Galleries, Main Galleries, East Wing

Self-Determination: A Global Perspective is the culmination of a three-year research project focusing on the new nation-states that emerged in the wake of the First World War, exploring the role of art and artists in relation to the expression of national identities, nation-building, and statecraft. The juxtaposition of historical and contemporary perspectives is a key element of this project.

IMMA has commissioned new works by Array Collective, Jasmina Cibic, Declan Clarke, Minna Henriksson and İz Öztat; alongside co-commissions by Banu Çennetoğlu, and Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind. The commissions bring together international artists to critically reflect on the outcomes of the self-determination movements, shedding light on the successes, failures, and unanticipated consequences. See more details here

Important Notice


We would like to advise our visitors that our Main Reception area is closed for renovation from 22 April until mid-June.  A temporary reception is open on the ground floor next to the original main entrance. While we prepare to open our next exhibition Hilary Heron: A Retrospective on 24 May, there are two exhibitions to see Derry Film & Video Workshop and Self: Determination: Artists Commissions. IMMA’s gardens and café are open to the public.