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Conversations about Counter-narratives

Project details

Year
2021
Programme
Graphic Design
Practices
Autonomous
Minor
Honours/ RASL minor

Conversations about Counter-narratives is a workshop in which we conceptualise counter-narratives that resist homophobic speech, set in the context of Lithuania. It was designed alongside my Erasmus University College (EUC) thesis about online homophobic discourse in Lithuania.

Nominated for the Drempelprijs Autonomous Practices.

The image shows the workshop materials. Two hands hold a black folder. On the top left, there is a description of the workshop written in white ink. Below are three booklet sets with cards in transparent envelopes. On the right side of the folder there is a big transparent envelope with "conversations about counter-narratives" written on it. It contains large images with cut-out people. On top of it, there is another paper attached, with images and text. It is the database of the workshop.

The workshop is rooted in research analysing homophobic discourse in Lithuanian online spaces, conducted using critical discourse analysis. The results pointed out certain prevalent themes in the narrative, such as nationalism, westernisation, (in)visibility and propaganda. Yet once we understand how homophobic narratives are constructed, it is imperative to find ways how to mitigate it. Conversations about Counter-narratives works as a space enabling different people to get acquainted with homophobic narratives in a closed environment, and then think of counter-narratives, reclaiming the rhetoric and reimagining it as empowering.

The outcomes of the workshops are collected in an online database, and are presented as tools and methods in occupying public space. This allows the outcomes to live beyond the enclosed space of the workshop, and potentially exist in public spaces. You can access the database here.

The image shows a booklet from the workshop. On the booklet we see an image of a wall, with the mural cut-out. On the other side, you can find the instructions on how the workshop is carried out. Below the open booklet, there are pink cards spread out. Next to them is a transparent envelope.

This summer I gave the workshop during the Baltic Triennial 14 in the Contemporary Art Centre of Vilnius, which was an insightful and rewarding experience. I also got to organise it during the worldmaking days of the RASL minor with a large group of students who produced many interesting counter-narratives. In the future, I would like to open up more such spaces.

To get to know the project and explore the current counter-narratives database,
visit this page