“Die jeweils selbstgewählte, mitunter recht stereotype Pose musste von den Protagonistinnen der Versuchsreihe eine halbe Stunde gehalten werden, während sechs horizontale und vertikale Scans den entblößten Körper visuell abtasteten. Jedes Porträt, das aufgrund minimaler Bewegungen Unschärfen und Störungen aufweist, besteht schließlich aus Zehntausenden von Einzelbelichtungen.” [–Matthias Harder]
What do authenticity and individuality mean, and how are they related to ubiquitous celebrities such as actors, musicians, political or religious leaders or . . . photo models?
I began asking this question when I worked as a volunteer at the Buddhist Archive of Photography, located in Luang Prabang, Laos. There, surrounded by historical photographs of Buddhist monks and the monastic employees of the archive, I became aware that these people, all dressed in orange, radiated a much greater charisma than the fashionis- tas and hipsters of the Western world, who are so mindful of distinctiveness.
For the Attitudes series, I was looking for women who agreed to be photographed without clothes – so that no cultural connotations would be revealed – in a pose of their own choice, which they believed would represent their personality. I also strove to thwart or even sabotage the idea of the “decisive moment”, which people like to see as the “talent” of the photographer. And since, in our memory, the image of someone is actually comprised of many individual scans of the eyes perceived at various times, Attitudes is logically also comprised of scans.
The women were requested to hold their pose for half an hour. During that time, six scans were made in horizontal and vertical directions. Each scan contains 9600 lines; each line is the addition of the individually specified information of the red, green and blue components of the visible spec- trum which are recorded at a slightly different time. Thus, each image is a construct of 172 800 juxtaposed and super- imposed single exposures.
Michael Maria Müller
Until now I took 17 Attitudes. The selection above got published in European Photography Art Magazine, issue 97, in 2015. More images you can see here.