Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


Camera rolls and mixtapes

06 October 2023, 4:30 pm–6:00 pm

negative photo of a girl

Camera rolls and mixtapes: family history, analogue archives, and diasporic placemaking (image from the series 'Appearing Acts' by Carô Gervay)

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to

All | UCL staff | UCL students






This event is supported by the Institute of English Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London and the Sarah Parker Remond Centre for the Study of Racism and Racialisation, University College London


Common Ground, G11
UCL Wilkins Building
Gower Street, South Wing
United Kingdom

Join two artist-researchers, Hodan Elmi and Carô Gervay, as they discuss how they combine creative practice and archival research to explore diasporic placemaking and revitalise the practice of family history. They will also reflect on their experiences of dealing with British cultural institutions when bringing this work to wider audiences.

The event will be chaired by Pragya Dhital (IES SAS and SPRC UCL) and followed by a drinks reception.



About the Speakers

Hodan Elmi

Interdisciplinary Artist, DJ, and Researcher

Hodan Elmi
Hodan Elmi is a London-based interdisciplinary artist, DJ, and researcher. She holds a collaborative doctoral partnership with the ICA and LCC’s CriSAP, funded by Techne, AHRC. She hosted the radio show The Garden is Open on Giles Peterson’s Worldwide FM and has appeared on Okoro Radio, NTS, Rinse France, and SOAS Radio. In 2018, she conducted research with Numbi Arts, leading to the production of the podcast “Coming Here: Being Here.” In 2021, Hodan collaborated with ICA and the BBC Arts New Creatives program to create "Sound Piece: Rituals & Practices: Exploring Gender Today." She is currently working with Numbi Arts on a sound piece, emerging from their latest exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery.

Hodan's doctoral research traces the emerging sounds of the Somali diaspora in the UK and Europe. She will discuss how her research has evolved through collaborations with social enterprises, galleries, and Somali artists working across different media: evolving soundscapes, ongoing field recordings, and music.

Carô Gervay

London-based artist working across analogue photography, sound, performance, video and participation

caro gervay
Picture credit: Noirfoto

Carô Gervay explores photography as a performative and relational process that produces new spaces of memory, connection and potential for critical action between the UK, France and Vietnam. She creates collective experiences where imagination and memory are at play. She grew up in the Paris banlieue with family from France, Vietnam and Algeria, and has lived in London since 2006. She is co-director of the Gate Darkroom, a community darkroom based at Thames-Side Studios in Woolwich, London.

Carô recently took part in the exhibition No Place like Home at the Museum of the Home with other diasporic Vietnamese artists. She also took part in 'live' archiving sessions organised by the An Viet Archives, at Hackney Archives, and spent some time at les Archives d'outre mer (the French overseas/colonial archives). She will be presenting her practice and through projection, text and artists’ books.