As a visual artist Laure Cottin Stefanelli is dealing with very basic issues of conceptual photography and film: where do I end, and where does the other (in a philosophical and personal way) start? How can the limits be exposed, how can this dark and wild in-between zone be embraced? Which role does the camera play, is it rather receiver or producer, and if it’s something in between, how to expose that?
In that sense it is a highly contemporary practice in between the eroticism of participation and the distance of observation. Cottin Stefanelli’s films, photographies – and also text-based work of the last years is united by the one common thread – her imagery is always on the limit of being molesting, stretching all physical and psychological temptations that imagery and its grammar can offer. Laure Cottin Stefanelli has an incredible talent for touching the limits of the good form, and that means, that the works have that split identity which good arts needs to have: the subject where it’s about (the story) and its container (the form) are well balanced out. I strongly hope that her work won’t get lost in the world of documentary film – therefore it is just too good art.
Martin Germann is senior curator at S.M.A.K., the Municipal Museum of Contemporary Art in Ghent, Belgium, since autumn 2012. Previously, Germann was curator at Kestner Gesellschaft Hanover, Germany and was responsible for the programme “Gagosian Gallery, Berlin” for the 4th Berlin Biennial for Contemporary Art. He has published numerous exhibition catalogues and monographs and has written for international magazines such as 032c and Frieze.