19:00 Uhr

Circle of Looks

Women in Situations of Departure and Arrival
Mithu Sanyal, Miriam Koch, Madhusree Dutta
FFT Kammerspiele
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The media influence our perception of refugees and migrants – and our opinions. Some stories are hyped, other are not told at all. News and commentary about refugee men dominate and cement clichés and images of the Other. Women remain in the background. Is their invisibility just another injustice or also an opportunity? We will be discussing power and the public sphere, as well as the role of art in this context. In conversation with: filmmaker and curator Madhusree Dutta, cultural critic and author Mithu M. Sanyal, as well as the head of Düsseldorf’s Office for Migration and Integration, Miriam Koch.

Moderator: Katja Grawinkel-Claassen. Cooperation: “Circle of Looks”


The art project Circle of Looks by Adwoa Adjei, Carol Pilars de Pilar, Thyra Schmidt and Anne Schülke has invited women to talks and happenings since spring 018. In autumn 2018, Thyra Schmidt and Anne Schülke will assemble the texts and images thus collected into an artist book. An exhibition and an artist book release will take place at the NRW-Forum Düsseldorf from 7 to 10 March 2019.

Circle of Looks – Instagram


Circle of Looks – WDR


Dr. Mithu M. Sanyal, born 1971 as the daughter of a Polish mother and an Indian father in Düsseldorf, Oberbilk is an author, cultural critic and journalist. She mainly writes features and radio plays for the WDR, but also for radio stations and newspapers such as the BR, SWR, Deutschlandfunk, DIE ZEIT, MISSY Magazine, Konkret, Vice, etc. She has a regular op-ed in the taz. In 2009, she published her cultural history of female genitalia “Vulva”. In 2016, she released “Vergewaltigung. Aspekte eines Verbrechens”, for which she received the Special International Science Humanities Prize of Federal Association of the German Book Trade in 2017 and which is due to appear in English soon. At FFT, she last moderated a talk with Laurie Penny in 2017. Photo: Regentaucher


Madhusree Dutta, born 1959 in Jamshepur/ Jharkhand, India is director of the Academy of the Arts of the World in Cologne since 2018. The filmmaker (mainly documentary film), producer, curator, lecturer and activist is also the founder and director of “Majlis”, an interdisciplinary center for art and research in Mumbai/Bombay. As a film director, she has also worked for Bollywood. Her work mainly deals with topics such as identity/ identification, gender, democratization of artistic practices, and interdisciplinarity. Her films are shown at film festivals and art events worldwide. 


Miriam Koch, born 1966 in Hameln, completed her diploma in Librarianship at the University of Applied Sciences in Hanover, and then headed the department for German Research Reports at university’s library there. In 2004, she switched to politics, first as a consultant to the party chairman of the Bündnis 90/Die Grünen in the State Parliament of Lower Saxony, later as an academic advisor. In 2010, she moved to Düsseldorf as the CEO of the city council fraction of the Bündnis 90/Die Grünen. In 2014, she ran for mayor.  From 2015 until 2018, she was the City’s Commissioner for Refugees and this year took over as head of Düsseldorf’s Office for Migration and Integration. Photo: Ingo Lammert



Circle of Looks is funded by and cooperates with: Intermigras e.V., Diakonie Düsseldorf, Kunststiftung NRW, Landeshauptstadt Düsseldorf, NRW-Forum Düsseldorf, Forum Freies Theater.