“Samira Elagoz weaves together performance and video, fiction and documentary, art and life, gravity and levity in an impressive and very surprising way.”
– Robert Kaltenhäuser, Blooom Awards
“I aim to view my life as cinematic, as material to be manipulated, to see reality as both subjective and malleable. Hoping to capture and form reality into a work that is unsettling and encourages discussion of an audiences own ethics and intimacy”
Samira Elagoz (1989, Helsinki) is a Finnish/Egyptian artist currently based in Amsterdam. She graduated in choreography from the Amsterdam University of the Arts in the spring of 2016. She has toured with both of her graduation works in various international film and performance festivals.
In 2014 Elagoz won the Blooom Award competition for visual art in Cologne out of 1200 applicants, with her first short film Four Kings. Her first solo exhibition was in Tokyo 2015. In October 2016 she received the André Veltkamp Award for her documentary/performance Cock, Cock.. Who's There?. Her first feature film Craigslist Allstars had its premiere at IDFA, International Documentary Film Festival of Amsterdam in 2016, and was nominated for the best international films competition at CPH:DOX 2017.
In 2017 she won the prestigious Prix Jardin d’Europe at Impulstanz, and was nominated for the BNG Bank Nieuwe Theatermakersprijs, prize for the most promising young theater maker in Holland. The German magazine Tanz nominated her as one of the most promising talents of 2017.
The last three years Elagoz has meticulously explored the possibilities of intimate encounters with strangers through screens, lenses and cyberspace. She has used various Internet platforms like Craigslist and Chatroulette to find everyday normal co-stars for her works.
Educated in performative arts, she incorporates aspects of this medium with that of video and film, creating her own unique brand of “docu-fiction”. She enjoys hopping between contexts, and therefore aims to create work than can be presented in film, performance and visual art contexts.
Samira spent her formative years in a village called Karkkila in Finland. Surrounded by forest, fields and little stimuli, she constantly tried to pervert her mind into divining interest. After escaping in her teens, she braved the world with an endlessly curious and devil may care attitude.
Artistic expression was a mainstay, and she decided on the simple dream of being a dancer. After studying for a year she could not help but find it unfulfilling to be someone else’s tool. Thus she quit and started to study choreography at the SNDO. Conceiving and directing her own works, she was finally in her element.
Initial expressions were dark, mysterious and cinematic performances, visually striking and surreal. When she started making film she wanted to do almost the opposite. Documentary, done in a raw and exposed way, in order to create real and tangible connections to her subjects. It all started by accident. A vocation she whimsically decided to pursue after having seen a cool guy at a bar, who she felt needed to be filmed.
In addition to her “meeting strangers” -project, she creates digital art featuring a variety of virtual selves, female characters. Online she can exist as an abstract, free from convention, and able to indulge in whimsical social commentary.