Lisbon-born Helena Almeida (1934) started out making three-dimensional paintings but, by 1969, she had turned to photography instead — as the medium permitted her to incorporate painting, performance art, body art and drawing into her practice, and to reinterpret her own body as a sculpture.

Despite being her own model, Almeida provocatively maintains that her works are not self-portraits; rather, she uses her body as an object, producing carefully choreographed images in which the body undergoes a number of actions: from wearing a canvas, to turning her back to the camera and provocatively lifting the hem of her skirt. She once remarked on her own presence in her work: “I wasn’t going to hire a model when I myself was in the studio… I know what positions I need to place myself in, which postures I should assume and how to understand the settings… But it’s not me. It’s as though I were another person.”


Tagged on:

Leave a Reply