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Conversation: Creative, Academic, and Personal Responses to Breastfeeding Research

Bonington Gallery

Lynn Lu Adagio
In conversation | Networking | Seminars | Workshops

The fifth segment of Formations, our year-long programme delivered in partnership with Nottingham Trent University’s (NTU) Postcolonial Studies Centre, includes events in May under the thematic banner – Formation: Milk. In this segment, we consider the representations and meanings of breastfeeding and the breastfeeding body, to consider how this highly emotive topic is encountered in writing and art, and in public spaces. Join us for conversations and workshops about global representations of breastfeeding in art, literature, and research, from personal stories to public encounters with art.

Past event

Event details

Breastfeeding is central to the human experience. It is also a highly emotive topic, debated in public and researched from clinical perspectives, yet in art and literature the topic remains under-emphasised, particularly as a symbolic or representational image. This conversation asks whether artists and writers tell different or similar stories about breastfeeding; engage different or similar audiences; and whether their works might have different or similar impacts on individuals, families, communities, scholarly debates, and frameworks.

It will engage with breastfeeding in creative, academic, and personal ways through a discussion with writer and academic Dionne Irving Bremyer (University of West Georgia, ‘My Black Breast Friend’, 2017); academic Ann Marie Short (Saint Mary’s College, Illinois, Breastfeeding and Culture, 2018), and visual artist Lynn Lu (Adagio 2013; On Mother’s Milk And Kisses Fed 2013). Anyone is welcome to attend.

Formation: Milk

The fifth segment of Formations, our year-long programme delivered in partnership with Nottingham Trent University’s (NTU) Postcolonial Studies Centre, includes events in May under the thematic banner – Formation: Milk.

In this segment, we consider the representations and meanings of breastfeeding and the breastfeeding body, to consider how this highly emotive topic is encountered in writing and art, and in public spaces. Join us for conversations and workshops about global representations of breastfeeding in art, literature, and research, from personal stories to public encounters with art.

Biographical notes

Dionne Irving Bremyer Originally from Toronto, Ontario, Dionne Irving’s work has appeared in Boulevard Magazine, LitHub, Missouri Review, Story Magazine, and New Delta Review, among others. She has a novel, Quint, forthcoming from 7.13 Books in August 2021 and a short story collection, Islands, forthcoming from Catapult in 2022. In this event, Dionne’s presentation will include excerpts from ‘My Black Breast Friend: Breastfeeding and My Black Body’. This essay makes connections between the author’s experience breastfeeding her child and the historical and cultural issues surrounding black women breastfeeding their babies. This presentation will link the experience of contemporary experience of breastfeeding as a black mother to historical trauma and low infant mortality among black children.

Ann Marie Short is an Associate Professor in English, Gender, and Women’s Studies at Saint Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana. Her research interests include postcolonial studies, motherhood studies, and US immigrant literature. In 2018, she co-edited the only recent edited collection focusing on breastfeeding in literature and culture, Breastfeeding and Culture: Discourses and Representation (Demeter Press) and wrote an essay for the same volume on Extended Breastfeeding in Emma Donoghue’s Room which dwelt on the representation of, and reader and critical responses to, breastfeeding in the novel. In this event, Ann Marie will discuss this interdisciplinary collection of essays and talk about her experiences editing a collection of work that took on the subject of breastfeeding from so many different perspectives.

Lynn Lu is a visual artist from Singapore. Trained in the US, France, and Japan, she earned her Doctor of Philosophy in Fine Art at the University of Newcastle in Australia. Her multidisciplinary practice revolves around participation and collaboration, context and site specificity, and the poetics of absurdity. Since 1997, Lynn has exhibited and performed extensively worldwide. Recent venues include National Gallery Singapore (2021), Staatlichen Kunstsammlungen Dresden (2019), Framer Framed (2018), Science Gallery London (2017), Saatchi Gallery (2017), Palais de Tokyo (2015), The Barbican (2015), Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (2013), Tate Modern (2010), Beijing 798 Art Zone (2009), and Singapore Art Museum (2007). Lynn lives and works between Singapore and London. She is a Visiting Artist at London College of Communication, University of the Arts London, Associate Lecturer at Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, and Associate Artist at ]performance s p a c e [. In this event, Lynn will present four works made with her lactating breasts, and through these works discuss maternal time that can only go at the pace of the other (Baraitser, 2020), bearing witness to a maternal experience that doesn't fit with the popular narrative, the rich folklore surrounding lactation, and the magical qualities attributed to breastmilk.

Please see the following websites for more detail on the work of Lynn Lu:

Jenni Ramone is a Senior Lecturer in Postcolonial Studies at NTU. Her recent book publications include Postcolonial Literatures in the Local Literary Marketplace: Located Reading, The Bloomsbury Introduction to Postcolonial Writing, Postcolonial Theories, and Salman Rushdie and Translation. Jenni Ramone specialises in global and postcolonial literatures and the literary marketplace. She is pursuing new projects on Global Literature and Gender, and on literature and maternity.

Enquiries

For all enquiries about Bonington Gallery exhibitions and events please email us, or call +44 (0)115 848 8651. Alternatively, please visit the Bonington Gallery website.

Image: Lynn Lu, Adagio. 2013, Performance and installation, 40 mins. From ‘In Confidence: Reorientations in Recent Art’; Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (PICA); Perth, Australia. 2013. Photograph by: Renae Coles

Past event

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