This dying goat is a school

Indigenous trophy hunting pictures through the eyes of a non-indigenous researcher


  • Joeri Verbesselt University of Leuven & LUCA School of Arts, Brussels



Indigenous Research, Non-indigenous, Relational, Grounded, Visitor


This text traces how my initial idea for researching the practice of Indigenous trophy hunting picture-making transformed into an opportunity for methodological self-reflection regarding the knowledge and representation of indigenous peoples. After an introduction, I will recount how I, as a white non- Indigenous artist and researcher from Belgium, ended up on the island of Taiwan and in Indigenous territories. In section two, I will discuss precedents of other white non-indigenous researchers and artists working in similar Indigenous contexts, and that could be understood through a relational model. Thirdly, I will expand on the methodological boundaries that Indigenous scholars themselves demand of non-indigenous involvement with Indigenous research, a grounded model. In the fourth section, I will elaborate on a proposal for grounded visitation introduced by Indigenous scholars for outsider engagement with Indigenous lifeworlds. And fifth, finally, I will revisit my experience of filming an Indigenous hunter’s killing of a mountain goat through a semi-autobiographical short story.


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Author Biography

Joeri Verbesselt, University of Leuven & LUCA School of Arts, Brussels

Joeri Verbesselt is an artist and researcher interested in ecological imaginaries and grounding the human-animal relationship. Since 2019, his artistic research has been clustered in a Ph.D. in Arts with a fellowship from the Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO). Joeri is a member of the 'Lieven Gevaert Research Centre for Photography, Art and Visual Culture' (University of Leuven) and the artistic research collective 'deep histories fragile memories' (LUCA School of Arts, Brussels). He works between Belgium and Indigenous contexts on Taiwan and Pongso no Tao.


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How to Cite

Verbesselt, J. (2023). This dying goat is a school: Indigenous trophy hunting pictures through the eyes of a non-indigenous researcher. ARCHIVO PAPERS, 3(1), 33–50.