May 23, 2010:

Doing ethnography at the operating theater in plastic and reconstructive surgery: The clinical part of the Surgical Wrappings project started on May 19 2010. Christina Lammer documented an operation of the face, using video and photography. The image materials will be collected and from time to time some of them will be available online. With permission of the patient and clinical personnel. The operation took place at the Confraternität Privatklinik Josefstadt. We like to thank the clinic director, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Aulitzky, for his invitation to realize the research undertaking. The ethnographer in a double role: as researcher and doing the photo documentation for the surgeons. For the latter, Manfred Frey (head of the Clinical Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, General Hospital Vienna), cooperation partner within the research project, gave me clear directives of how to use his camera. A preliminary concept of how to make images during surgery was discussed with Artur Zmijewski one day before the operation took place. He made suggestions where to locate the tripod with the video camera and how to frame the venue. However, his advices could be assembled only to a certain extend. Since there was just one video camera available, I decided to combine video and photography. The video camera was put where it was not in the way and could still capture the scenery in the operating room. I took photographs of those structures, which I found interesting, referring to issues of drapery and surgery. Drawing: Artur Zmijewski