The text approaches Ulrich Seidl’s work from two directions. The first part connects Seidl’s images to Diane Arbus’s portrait photography. It shows how Seidl creates images that affect the viewer with affections opposite to those felt by the people in front of the camera. The second part of the text focuses on the body in Seidl’s films. The body turns out to be a key vehicle of meaning and also the point where documentary and fiction cinema converge since the body is brought into both from the real world. The body as materially real and at the same time the object of the gaze.

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Failed Bodies: On Ulrich Seidl’s Films