The Aesthetics and Counter-Aesthetics of International Law
University of Liverpool, 28-29 April 2016
The first workshop on the theme of aesthetics and counter-aesthetics of law will be held at the School of Law and Social Justice on 28 and 29 April 2016. The workshop is organised around the International Criminal Court’s traveling photography exhibition titled ‘Justice Matters’ which will be exhibited at the University (pdfs available). A critical reflection of the exhibition is intended as an entry point into thinking more broadly about theaesthetics of law, ie law’s space, law’s language, law’s signs. Questions we will be asking include: How are the victims of international crimes portrayed in the exhibition? Does a picture really paint a thousand words? What is the role of international organisations in institutionalising images and associations with ‘justice’? Is the ICC using pictures to inform about its activities or also to market a punitive international criminal justice system?
In the course of the workshop, we also aim to discuss, imagine and present a counter-aesthetic of law. What would a counter-aesthetic of justice include? Would it be one of farce and satire as is the case in joke charity appeals? Would it be a form of détournement as imagined by the Situationist International? How can images avoid stereotyping and instead inspire reflexiveness?
The workshop will bring together academics, legal practitioners, artists, documentary-makers and journalists.
28th April 2016: Peace v Justice, Film Screening and Q&A with Filmmaker Klaartje Quirins
29th April 2016: Public Lecture by Wayne Jordash QC
Wayne Jordash QC will be giving a public lecture to mark the close of the workshop. The title of his lecture is: ‘International Trials and the Justice-Victim Dichotomy. A View From Practice’.
The exhibition and workshop is made possible with the support of a Research and Development Fund grant from the School of Law and Social Justice as well as funding from the Critical Approaches to International Criminal Law (CAICL) research cluster.