2022 L’Atelier, Nantes, France
2020 Eros & Photography. Part I: Behind Desire, CHAUSSEE 36, Berlin, Germany
2019 IRL: Investigating Reality, The Untitled Space, NYC
2019 Conditions of Exchange, pop up gallery at 80 Nassau street, NYC
2018 Our Souls to Keep, Field Projects, NYC
2018 Figure Fuggenti, Acta International, Rome
2018 Divina Comedia, XXXI Festival International of Sexual Diversity at Museo Universitario del Chopo
2018 Opening Reading, collaboration with D. Graham Burnett, Cambridge, MA
2017 Notas al Futuro, Galerié Breve, Mexico City
2017 Honorable mention in the annual juried competition, Baxter Street Gallery, New York.
2017 Hidden Narratives, Rita K. Hillman Gallery, New York
Focales article by Marc Lenot
Ekphrasis Journal article by Alexandra Turcu
A Woman’s Right to Pleasure
Using her own body as her medium, Dani Lessnau explores properties of the gaze, the body, and the photographic process. In extimité, Lessnau turns her body into a camera obscura to record intimate moments with past and present sexual partners. The camera demarcates internal and external space and underscores the penetration of her body by both light and lovers, but also her agency in image making. The female gaze renders bodies familiar and alien, tender and erotic, strong and vulnerable, specific and abstract. Blurred images suggest the fluid and visceral nature of relating to the other while experiencing ones own physical reactions. Lessnau’s darkroom process is heavily physical and tactile, complicating photographic conventions of how an image should be captured and read. The result is an experience of intimate space that feels at once voyeuristic and affecting.
Lessnau studied at the International Center of Photography, New York and is presently pursuing her MFA at Bard College. She lives and works in Brooklyn.