Split-Second Histories

Image: World Trade Centre, 1978. Courtesy of Stephen Finch.

A camera captures just a fraction of second. The current exhibition Off Centre / On Stage presents fifty-eight photographs of Dubai from the 1970s in Jameel Art Centre’s lobby. That totals less than two seconds of history.

Join us for an evening slideshow of deep Kodachrome colours as we seek to stretch the duration of these images through interaction and inspection. Several longtime residents of Dubai will join Todd Reisz, curator of the exhibition, to look closely at a selection of the photographs. Their shared observations will expand the exhibition’s themes by instilling the images with diverse and personal perspectives on living in a photogenic city. Participants are invited to listen, reflect and respond to the themes and searches at hand.

Off Centre / On Stage presents photographs taken by two architects, Mark Harris and Stephen Finch. Both were in Dubai in the 1970s in connection with development projects that were set to transform the city. The photographs might capture a version of the city now lost to time, but memory can sustain them into the present and future.

These photographs were not taken with the intention of being exhibited. By being shared with the public, they might take on new and unexpected meanings and reveal unfinished storylines.

RSVP strongly encouraged; limited capacity.

About Todd Reisz

Todd Reisz is an architect and writer. His book Showpiece City: How Architecture Made Dubai (Stanford University Press, 2020) explores architecture’s packaging to sell Dubai on a global stage.

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