IMartha Rosler, Vital Statistics of a Citizen, Simply Obtained, 1977
Martha Rosler
Vital Statistics of a Citizen, Simply Obtained

Since the early 1970s, Martha Rosler’s (*1943, USA) works have constructed social and political analyses of the myths and socio-political realities of contemporary culture. Her video works investigate with deadpan wit how socio-economic realities and political ideologies dominate ordinary life. Presenting complex critical analyses in accessible forms, Rosler merges performance, narrative, documentary and mass media images.

artist's website:

Based on a performance presented at the University of California, San Diego in 1974, this video is a critique of social standardization. (...) A woman’s body is measured in a clinical setting and compared with standard measurement. Voiceovers, symbolic scenes, and photographs suggest the implications of enforcing social standards of measurement – whether by the state through its police functions or, more informally, by ‘common sense’. (Martha Rosler)

Courtesy Martha Rosler & Video–Forum of Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.)

Document media
Video, colour, sound, 39:20 min

Issue date

Laura Cottingham (COT 1)

language, measuring, normativity, state oppression