Wednesday, 25 January 2023

The Brutality of Spectacle –
A Brief History of the Execution Postcard

Tuesday 28 March 2023 at the Bell

We send and receive postcards between friends and family. But alongside images of sandy beaches and idyllic landscapes, another kind of image proliferated in the early 20th century. The depiction of execution and torture in postcard form was relatively common in the early 1900s, especially in China and the United States, a practice grounded in Western imperialism. The images on the postcards offered a persistent replaying of human degradation.

Conceptual artist Jason B Bernard and historian Jennifer Wallis illuminate the history of these macabre souvenirs, including the ethical issues surrounding their study today.. How can we begin to comprehend these images? Were they a kind of memento mori? A deterrent? Or simply revelling in the cruelty of spectacle? 

Venue -- The Bell, 50 Middlesex Street, London E1 7EX (Tubes: Liverpool Street, Aldgate, Aldgate East)

Date --  Tuesday 28 March 2023 – 7.30 for 8pm

Tickets -- £5/£3 concs

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