Alma Haser is a photographer from the UK by way of Germany with a flair for composing and documenting uncanny scenes and creating excellent subversions of traditional portraiture. “Cosmic Surgery’, a series of portraits in which origami and paper craft takes centre stage blends a background in fine art and graphics with striking contemporary portrait photography.
‘Cosmic Surgery’ is a wonderful set of images featuring complex paper manipulations of the sitter’s faces which are layered back onto original portraits, this composition is then photographed a final time. The results are freaky, alluring and moreish. Remove the addition of geometric alien paper-foldings and the portraits themselves have a simple, ethereal quality and make stark use of primary colours and soft, dreamy lighting.
The series received third place people’s choice award at last year’s Foto8 Summer Show and ‘The Ventriloquist,’ a wonderfully strange portrait of two friends posing as operator and dummy, was shortlisted for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize and shown at the National Portrait Gallery in 2012. Alma’s work is a perfect blend of sharp realism, psychedelia and, in our opinion, great styling. Her characterful subjects exude mixed and contrasting narratives and are presented to us in an array of fantastic outfits that pop against neutral grey backgrounds.
Alma has exhibited all over the world, has collaborated with a great selection of talented creatives and is the founder of the Ten Seconds Project. Currently working on a pop-up book about her sublime paper creations and unique portraits, Alma splits her time between working in London and the South East of England. We look forward to seeing more from this exceptional image-maker over the coming years.
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Words: Emily Beeson | @younggoldteeth