DOING HER - portraits
photography series (6 portraits)
concept, photography, costume, set design and make-up
Ivan Blagajcevic, Nicolas Dubosson, Ivy Monteiro, Suzana Ristic, Rocco Schira and Valérie Reding
„DOING HER“ is a multidisciplinary project that combines a series of six photographs, a video installation as well as a long-durational interactive live performance. It has been created upon invitation by the curators Julian Denzeler, Lorenz Hubacher and the city of Zurich as a response to and in dialogue with the works of the sculptor Hermann Haller (24 December 1880 - 23 November 1950), who is particularly known for his innumerable, often times life-sized sculptures devoted to the study of the female nude.
Through the project „DOING HER“ Valerie Reding wanted to explore her (female-perceived) body as material, question the stereotype of the feminine, passive muse in opposition to the masculine, active creator and genius as well as reverse the hierarchies and power relations between the performer and the spectator with their voyeuristic potential.
Valerie Reding created a series of five portraits, combining drag, the artificial, the witchy and the monstrous, to explore alternative forms of femininity with bodies and personalities, that identify most of the times as male in their daily lives. Working with Ivan Blagajcevic, Nicolas Dubosson, Ivy Monteiro, Suzana Ristic, Rocco Schira and herself in a self-portrait, she created surreal creatures that challenge hegemonial heteronormative concepts of gender identities and representations, and tried to find „authenticity“ through artifice.