Annual theme "Fragile Identities" 

Three-part Symposium "Fragile Identities" (2013/14)



Panel 3: Identities in the Context of Radical Social Changes

mit Claire Denis, Okwui Enwezor and Sarah Rifky


Claire Denis (born April 21, 1948, Paris) is a Paris-based filmmaker and one of the major artistic voices of contemporary French cinema. She grew up partly in Cameron, Burkina and Djibouti as a daughter of a colonial-official. Claire Denis enrolled in the Institut des Hautes Études Cinématographiques (now École Nationale Supérieure des Métiers de l'Image et du Son) where she graduated in 1971. At the beginning of her film career, she worked as an assistant director to Dušan Makavejev, Costa Gavras, Jacques Rivette, Jim Jarmusch and Wim Wenders. Claire Denis made her film debut in 1988 withChocolat, a luminous depiction of malaise of the post-colonial world. Since 2002 she has been Professor of Film at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. Her work has dealt with themes of colonial and post-colonial West Africa, as well as issues in modern France.


Okwui Enwezor



Okwui Enwezor (Nigeria, 1963) is an international curator, the Director of the Haus der Kunst in Munich. He has curated many exhibitions and festivals all over the world including the Johannesburg Biennale in South Africa (1997), the Bienal Internacional de Arte Contemporaneo de Sevilla, in Spain, the Gwang-ju Biennale in South Korea (2008). He was the artistic director of Documenta 11 in Kassel, Germany, in 2002, and was Dean of Academic Affairs and Senior Vice President of San Francisco Art Institute (2005–2009).


Sarah Rifky is a writer and curator based in Cairo where she co-founded Beirut, an art space that thinks about institution building as a curatorial act. She is founder of CIRCA (Cairo International Resource Center for Art) and was Curator at Townhouse Gallery of Contemporary Art in Cairo 2009–2011. She was a Curatorial Agent of dOCUMENTA(13) in Kassel, Germany. In 2010 she was Adjunct Professor of Art History and Theory at the American University in Cairo and co-manages MASS Alexandria, an independent study program for young artists in Egypt, with Wael Shawky. Rifky is author of The Going Insurrection (2011) and Delusions of Reference: In Defense of Art (forthcoming). She is co-editor of the artist book Damascus: Tourists, Artists and Secret Agents (2009).