Maria Lalou (Athens 1977) is a conceptual artist, an experimental filmmaker and occasional writer. She explores the topic of viewing, incorporating cinematic apparatus and surveillance as part of her tools, with central references to the politics of the viewer. Large-scale installations, performances, films and publications characterize her work, shown internationally. Lalou made her first attempt to deliver a statement through a radical long-length film shot as one long shot in 2018. This film is a document about discursive dialogue and image production, and its relation to cinematic time. Lalou has lectured on her work at the School of Architecture (Princeton University), the Department of Architecture (ETH Zurich), Aalto University (Helsinki), Rijksacademie Studios (Amsterdam), Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto (Biella), the University of Venice (IUAV) and has published two monographs, [theatro] (2015) and ‘the camera’ (2019). Along with her autonomous practise, since 2012, Lalou works collectively with the architect Skafte Aymo-Boot, under the lens of modern Athens’ chronicle and its concrete skeleton buildings. In 2020 they co-founded and co-direct ‘Cross Section Archive’ in Athens, a space for Art & Architecture, investigating phenomena that occur in the intersection of the disciplines, exploring how historical facts, political structures and everyday circumstances have been interfering, co-producing and directing them.
Her art works are in the edge of social experiments and practised rhetorics by staging art installations on the steps of theory of the spectacle. Her research is focused on the role of the camera apparatus: its significance in the commons, its personification in the private, its appropriation in the surveillance of everyday networked reality and its potentiality as a weapon of truth in recording history. In her PhD she is re-thinking the viewers’ position questioning the status of virtual images and the mediation of data controlled by algorithms today, with advocate Vilem Flusser and his thought on the programmatic reality. Through this she is developing a conceptual lexicon of tools via artistic decisions as a source of new objectives about the use of the camera medium, attempting an argumentation for the use of the device as a tool of resistance towards algorithmic governance and its politics of viewing towards the freedom of the subject.
Maria Lalou is a candidate for Doctorate of Philosophy, via a PhD by Published Works at CREAM, University of Westminster. She lives in Amsterdam and Athens.