Alma Haser

Cosmic Surgery

London, U.K.-based Alma Haser combines her fine art background with photography in her disquieting and disconcerting series Cosmic Surgery (2012). Having used origami in the past for props in her photographs, here Haser makes it an integral part of the final image.

The series has three distinct stages. First, Alma photographs her sitter, then prints multiple images of the subject’s face and folds them into a complicated origami modular construction, which then gets placed back onto the original face of the portrait. The whole thing is then re-photographed. The manipulated faces begin to feel quite alien, as if they belong to some futuristic next generation.

With the simple act of folding an image Haser transforms each face and makes a sort of flattened sculpture. By de-facing her models, she makes their portraits into her own creations.

Alma Haser is the Magenta Foundation’s Bright Spark Award Winner for 2013. She graduated with a BA(Hons) in Photography in Art Practice in 2010 from Nottingham-Trent University. Upon moving to London, Haser started to create a strong body of portraits that have gained her a lot of recognition. Chosen by the British Journal of Photography as one of the four best graduates of 2010, her work was subsequently featured in ten exhibitions internationally. Her Cosmic Surgery series received third place peoples choice award at the Foto8 Summer Show 2012 and The Ventriloquist, a portrait of two friends, was shortlisted for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize shown at the National Portrait Gallery in London.