White Flag | Hanna Putz and Sophie Thun

White Flag is a result of a close dialogue between two young women, two photographers, two friends, developed in a frenetic, engaged, lively ping pong of images. Over the course of two years, Hanna and Sophie have photographed each other in a constant reversal of roles, poses, gazes, spaces, where the boundaries between mutual portraiture and self-portraiture become blurred.
Each diptych registers a dual gaze inside a shared zone, where the space of the images is brought alive by the bodies of Hanna and Sophie, their cameras and the places in which they move. Having set the rules of the game, they interpret them with absolute freedom, giving rise to a lively, carefree reflection on the act itself of making photographs.
In a dualism of roles the protogonists alternate between being the prey and the huntress in a vortex of shots. A physical and metaphorical duel in an utterly feminine key that erases the vertical photographer/model relationship, wielding the camera like a weapon with which to capture and take possession of the other. The device takes on the semblance of an optical prosthesis, an extension of the body and the gaze, to take part in a struggle where the roles of the “dominant” and the “dominated” are subjected to constant slippage.
If taking a person’s picture usually means transforming them into an object that can be symbolically possessed, here the equality of forces and the complicity shared by Hanna and Sophie subvert this interpretation, transforming the battle into a declaration of love.

Text by Luca Lo Pinto: “Women with cameras. Pictures of you=us”

In collaboration with the Austrian Cultural Forum


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