ホテル Hotel

ホテル Hotel – Surrogates (reads: “hotel-hotel – surrogates”) is an ongoing long-term project started in Jan 2016, using installations of lens-based images of self-made small-scale puppets (currently over 1000+ small scale prints), using the underlying narrative of a fictive long-term residency hotel and its tenants, told from the perspective of a fictional documentary photographer that moved into the hotel, depicted in casual intimate snap-shots;
the project is inspired by Nan Goldin’s “Ballad of Sexual Dependency”, Larry Clark’s “Tulsa”, Peter Hujar and others, investigating visual communication, the effect of “evidence” a camera adds to an image, and the irony of the fetishism around images depicting the intimate life of people of a socially low class whilst the depicted people in real life would be marginalized.

The characters and stories in this project rooted in the punk rock movement and counter-culture are not freely invented; as opposed to my earlier project “Each reflection…” , they are not based on one single specific person, instead they are amalgams of various people I know inclusive myself. As in political puppetry I am using the characters as a form of mask to talk about things that without it seem to radical or too personal to discuss in public.

Please view the featured characters below, more are being added regularly according the development of the narration. You can follow both production diary/narration in the BLOG on this website, please click on: “Handabbeisser”.

So far the project has been exhibited as photo-installation (small-scale prints 4 x 6 inch, 5 x 7 inch) in:

as well as live slide-show in:

other events are in planning, please check back for updates;

REVIEW, Kayle Whalen / PerformInk :

“The evening closed with a slideshow of some of Josiane Keller’s ホテル Hotel, an ongoing project of stark, devastating photographs of clay sculpture-puppets, based on images from the 1970s and ‘80s. It was a quick tonal shift for Scratch Night, but Keller’s work is undeniably powerful. Viewing her explorations, as she puts it, of the difference between a 3-D sculpture and a 2-D image of a 3-D sculpture, was a valuable section of the night, and of the whole festival.”  (Jun 7th 2017)

A printed photo-book titled “NADJA – The Lover’s Flower” is in working. Please check back soon for more information.

Disclaimer: 

in contrast to conventional puppet/puppetry based projects, this one here is NOT entertainment geared towards a child or child-like audience. Like classical puppetry it is a socio-political critique; I am attempting to propose and research an aspect of human life in a symbolized way in pictures and words;
consequently topics like sexuality, drug-use as well as many other imbalances of the human body and soul, birth and death and all the bits in between are widely represented, any gender boundaries do not apply;

PLEASE LOOK AND READ RESPONSIBLY !