The World Seen Through a Vagina. The Photography of Private Space in Dani Lessnau’s Experiment

Alexandra TURCU


This paper aims to renegotiate the place of the photography of private space, as the recent experiments in this area show that it is imperative that the moral censorship with which it has been surrounded by the sovereign power be undone. In the first section of the paper I will analyse Hannah Arendt’s political philosophy in relation to Ariella Azoulay’s political-ontological theory of photography, arguing that Azoulay succeeds in finding a solution for the crisis announced by Arendt. Furthermore, using Azoulay’s method and Arendt’s theory, I will investigate the state of the photography of private space, demonstrating its legitimacy to transgress from the private to the public. In the last section I will present Dani Lessnau’s photographic experiment, showing the manner in which it is able to question the concept of photography itself.

Keywords: private and public realm, Hannah Arendt, the civil contract of photography, Ariella Azoulay, Dani Lessnau

DOI: 10.24193/ekphrasis.19.8