Copyright © 2023 Nimco Kulmiye Hussein.
All Rights Reserved.


An Invisible Guest: Mapping Voices, Relations and Agencies is an online project based on the interviews conducted at Central Saint Martins. Encompassing a plurality of narratives around relationships and professional and artistic careers cultivated over the years in the school, this project aspires to capture the stories falling in-between the lines. It centers agency in the core of everything, reminding us to view subjectivities and memories as situated, partial and incomplete. Moreover, it binds the author(s)/producer(s)/curator(s) of this project to reflect on their own agencies throughout the process; acknowledging positions on which the interaction and engagement with the material as well as the audience happen from.

Following in the footsteps of an Italian feminist art critic Carla Lonzi’s Autoritratto (Self-Portrait) (1969), this project embodies ‘creative subjectivity’, which steps away from patriarchal ideas linked to individuality, and instead aspires to seize experiences and processes through active engagement with the existing material that challenges notions of visibility. Intertwining the narratives of history with the contemporary ones, alternative spaces are born, decentering the project from a singular point of reference.

An Invisible Guest, aims to critically unpack the scenes behind the archival collection: Whose voices are being heard? Who is absent? Who are the gatekeepers? Building on methodologies of care, this project aims to build bridges and conversations between past generations and contemporary creatives within the art institution, bringing up the challenges of now and then and creating interstices where different voices and subjectivities can be heard. Édouard Glissant’s statement on the ‘right to opacity’ is applied as a way of praxis and understanding between the agents of this project to reclaim multiplicities of voices, while aiming to form a transparent way of interacting both with the new interviewees as well as the audience. By deconstructing and demystifying the structures, histories and myths surrounding the institution, the project reveals whose narratives constitute the art school.

This online Archival/Curatorial project is the work of Franki McDade, Yuhui ‘Catherine’ Li, Alexander Aplerku, Nimco Hussein, Maria Demine, Clémentine Dubost, and Wenqing Liang – seven Central Saint Martins MA Culture, Criticism and Curation students with varied backgrounds, compiling both UK and international students.

Many thanks to Janine Francois, Jamie Sutherland, Siyan Zhang, our wonderful podcast guests as well as Annabel Crowley, Tom Lynch, Rahul Patel, Alyshia Jack, Lara Bazzoui (WIM), Pinky Latt, Dee Juneja, Catherine Caldwell, Sarah Campbell, Alejandro Ball, Alison Green, and Lee Weinberg who have supported this project through its journey.

The podcast series can be found on Ximalaja, Spotify and Soundcloud. ︎︎︎ 

Archive clips courtesy of Central Saint Martins Museum & Study Collection. ︎︎︎ 

Theme tune by Hannah Kane.︎︎︎

An Invisible Guest ︎︎︎