Laura Medler


Notes de mon entretien avec Laura Medler le 2 février 2011 à Londres.


Student at Slade (where photography wasn’t taught), exchange in Helsinki in 1998, worked with found images.

I heard about periphery camera at British Museum, manufactured by Rolls Royce: fixed camera, object turns, surface becomes a 2d image. Was fascinated by an urn. Made technical images at British Museum.

Decided to reference this urn, dissolve photography.

Painted myself in silver. Funeral mask. Three minutes to do 360°; synchronization. Sci-fictional aspect unexpected. Playing between living and non living, like a statue. In their studio, light.

Not working in a very precise manner, I liked the results. Small errors, deformation.

Extend the image to entire roll of firm.

Camera 35mm with slit in shutter. Difficult to move camera and wind film at same time, then motor for film. Very low-tech. Bricolage.

Camera always moving.

Performative quality.

Photograph my entire body: on a turntable, I turn.

Camera goes from top to bottom.

Then found printer who could print the entire film in large format.

Evokes DNA. External and interior of the body, container and contained. Transgressing boundaries.

Unbound physical form of the body.

Lots of trial and error (I worked with a good technician).

I am interested in the transformative power of this process, not the technicality.

Body repeated, continuous.

Then with two people on the turntable, couple dancing.


Then more subtle distortions:

A pregnant friend.

Graph paper (like Muybridge).

Initially printed real size, then enlarged them, or print details.

Work on photos of Isadora Duncan.

Linked with choreography, very much a performance.

I could use the space of the photograph to have a narrative, beginning, middle and end.

Time is becoming a factor.

Idea of progression of man on earth, of life cycle, from foetus to corpse.

Drawing around my body in 40 seconds with chalk: simple mark making, a trace, and index, like invention of painting (Dibutades). Allegory of photography: what remains is the trace my body left on the surface. The body completely dissolves.


Taking details as a separate work, zooming in.


Marey & Muybridge freezing the movement, as opposed to Lumière reconstructing movement.


Big gap in my work, 2003-2008 (family issues).


Construction and destruction of image.


All of the work is performative.


Also a series on domestic chores.

Work in garden (Fragonard…).

Classical art history references.


Influences? not many; it’s my own space.

John Hilliard, questioning photography.


Taking into account imperfections, randomness, not perfect synchronicity.




Ritualistic dimension.


I am the only woman doing slit photography.