La vie d'après

2020

photography and mask

photography, vagina dentata sculpture and makeup

Valerie Reding

assistance and model

Nico Dubosson

music for video

Ivy Monteiro

commissioned by

Magazine 360 (www.360.ch)

I have always been fascinated by masks - not by what they conceal, but by what they actually reveal. I don't believe in nudity as a form of "natural" authenticity. As soon as we interact with other people, we all wear many different masks at every moment of our lives. Some are visible, others are less obvious. This does not mean that we hide behind all these masks, on the contrary: these artifices reveal the many facets that build our identities. We are fluid, multiple, contradictory beings, always moving, transforming and in transition.

The current pandemic affects us collectively in our intimacy. It violently confronts us with our relationships with others as much as with ourselves. Sanitary masks are supposed to protect us from what could harm us and, at the same time, they separate us from each other by hiding an intimate part of our face - the mouth - an essential means for communicating with the outside. Furthermore, in the context of COVID-19, we are living with the pervasiveness of illness, death and the breakdown of our systems. At the same time, there is hope for renewal, revolution and the power of life in solidarity. The figure of Ophelia evokes these two seemingly contradictory aspects: the corpse decomposing in the water becomes once again a fertile ground and source of life.

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val@valeriereding.com  |  0041 76 225 16 64

©2020 Valerie Reding