A Look Into Laura Mota's Instant Photo Project The Book Of Destruction


Photography can be a casual pastime for some, but for others, it serves as a powerful tool for introspection and self-expression. Like any art form, photography allows individuals to delve into their innermost thoughts and tackle significant subjects. Embarking on a project or series can provide structure and reveal deeper layers of meaning within one's work.

Looking at Laura's (@laurapintomota) portfolio, it becomes apparent that she skillfully merges her visual art expertise with photography in order to delve into the theme of queerness. Entitled The Book Of Destruction, her project combines instant photography with various other visual art forms to capture her unique experience of queerness. Through the deliberate manipulation of instant photos, she examines her personal journey and identity.

Credits: laurapintomota

Hi and welcome to the Lomography Magazine! Can you introduce yourself and tell us how you started your analogue journey?

I am Laura Mota, 24 years old, and a Portuguese visual artist based in the Metropolitan Area of Lisbon. I started my analogue journey during college. I took a bachelor's in painting where I had the opportunity to also work and study photography and it was during this time I purchased my first instant camera. Well and then... I started experimenting. First, it worked more as a tool to complement my painting projects, only to later on become its own thing due to the great artistic potential of an instant photograph. Only after getting my Polaroid camera did my mother's coworker, who had studied cinema, offer me her film camera which I currently use especially during my travels.

Can you tell us more about your project The Book of Destruction?

The Book of Destruction is an ongoing project, that I believe is meant to accompany me in the transitional moments in my life. To capture my life in an ongoing mode of self-destruction and recreation. Through the capturing of loved ones, friends, self-portraits, and landscapes, I try to preserve the moments that are fleeing, with the effort of capturing their impermanence in the deconstruction or even complete destruction of what one immediately assumes when one thinks of an instant photograph. Which in turn is connected to my own experience of queerness.

Credits: laurapintomota

Can you walk us through your process for this project?

At some point in my experimentation with the Polaroid camera, I started taking many self-portraits, testing my more masculine presentation and androgyny. After purchasing the book Polaroid: The Missing Manual by Rhiannon Adam, I started experimenting with some techniques to manipulate my image and the Polaroid's simultaneously. Through the cutting, gluing, scratching, bleaching, submerging, and burning of the photographs, I replicated my complicated relationship with my body dysphoria, my sexuality, and the way all of this interacts with my perception of my surroundings. This is the reason why I instantly started photographing everyday landscapes and relevant people in my life at the time, as well. All impermanent, like myself. It's funny, just yesterday I was talking with my girlfriend about how impermanent I am and how, the idea of change and uncertainty terrifies her in some way. I believe that fear comes from a similar place as the fear of queerness. The idea of inconsistency, of existing without a fixed cannon or a safe unaltering reality, fixed in time, is what drives that fear. Unaccepting that as in nature things do always change and move forward.

What made you decide to use the instant medium of photography for this project?

I believe from the start I made an unconscious association (later conscious) of the structure of the polaroid with the structure, or better, the assumed structure that my body and my life should have. As I had to deconstruct and destroy all those assumptions I and others had about myself, that process consequently translated to my artistic expression. It is also important to take into account that the commercial image most have of a polaroid, also played its part in the necessity of disrupting that same formed idea of an instant image.

Credits: laurapintomota

How do you define queerness?

In my academic and artistic studies, the definition of queer always comes in hand with the issue of defining nature. As it is assumed that queer people engage in unnatural behaviors for, in their homoerotic interactions, there is no possibility for reproduction. Here the nature of sexuality is understood only by its potential for procreation as "the" natural. Queerness comes as a challenge to that notion (especially in the matter of sexuality and gender) and it offers a more realistic idea of nature as it is nonstatic and an always shifting creative phenomenon. In summary, queerness affirms the creative potential of nature. With that understanding, it has been my passion in later years to understand how it is affecting and redefining 21st-century art, while simultaneously contributing to that visual change.

What does pride month mean to you?

As a teenager, Pride was special to me for being the only place where I could see older queers and affirm to myself that being gay wasn't a tragedy I had to carry for the rest of my life, and just something as natural as breathing. But now, in the burning world of my early adulthood, Pride comes as a possibility to march alongside my peers. A warm possibility, besides the unintentional march we make alone every day in the face of hatred. As I usually do in my lonely marches, let's smile on their faces and maybe show a finger.

Credits: laurapintomota

We thank Laura for her wonderful photos and for sharing this personal and inspiring project. Be sure to keep up with her on her LomoHome.

written by rocket_fries0036 on 2024-06-27 #gear #people #places #project #instax #gay #pride #creative #queer #instant-photos #journalling #pride-month #lgbtqia


  1. marcelb_lichtet
    marcelb_lichtet ·

    A Wonderful Interview , And Fantastic Pictures

  2. laurapintomota
    laurapintomota ·

    Thank you so much!

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