Department of Photography, FAMU in Prague Department of Photography and Imaging, NYU Tisch School of the Arts, New York
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Quadrennial Exhibition Exchange
Ari Adams is a twenty-two year old New York based photographer. His main focus is to examine how the mixing of politics and pleasure can lead to a more inclusive and active voting base and political arena especially among younger generations.
Photography and Imaging, from where he recently graduated in May of 2020. Raafae was named a 2019 Gordon Parks Foundation Scholar by DPI Chair, Dr. Deborah Willis.
Junyan Hu is a photographer from Beijing, currently living in Taylor Bissey is a New York. His main interests photographer born and raised include the concept of in Seattle, Washington and language game, perception, relocated to New York in 2016 and cybernetics. to pursue her BFA at the Department of Photography Karolina Lajch was born in and Imaging at Tisch School Warsaw, Poland but moved of the Arts, NYU. She works to the United States early into with various media from her childhood. Having grown 4x5 large format analog up navigating between two continents and two cultures photography to video. Her sparked her interest in the work revolves on capturing the passing of traditions notion of identity. Karolina from one generation to has always been interested another and discovering how in how the human brain these traditions are upheld works, especially how it stores or disrupted with the new information and what this generation. means in terms of identity and individuality. She chose to explore this fascination and Nina Dietz is a Senior at her identity in her graduating the Tisch School of the Arts thesis work, in which she in the Photography and revisits distant memories of Imaging Program. She is a her childhood through her passionate documentarian family archive. Karolina is and activist, with a particular interest in climate change. Her a graduating senior at the department of Photography & insatiable curiosity drives her to explore endlessly. She is a Imaging at New York University compassionate peer educator Tisch School of the Arts. and cares deeply for her community. Nina graduates in Phoebe Nakry Lincoln is May 2020. She is excited by the a multimedia artist who opportunities and challenges grew up in Chicago. Her presented by entering the current work focuses on the professional sphere during amalgamation of past and this tumultuous time. Nina is present photographs, exploring committed to using her talents her identity as an adoptee from to build a more equitable and Cambodia. sustainable future. Liu Liu is a videographer Raafae Ghory (b. 1997, and photographer based in Lahore) is a Pakistani New York City. Liu started American photographer and as a musician and slowly artist based in New York explored different mediums. City. While he always had In 2019 Liu received street a deep interest in imagephotography awards from making and visual culture, Leica and was exhibited he seriously began to pursue in Shanghai China. Liu is visual art in his sophomore currently exploring themes year of high school. The work related to time, space and he made over the next two memory, moving towards a years allowed him to attend more conceptual approach to NYU Tisch’s Department of his projects.
New York based photographer, Daniela Loya, seeks closure and personal growth through her photography. Working in both digital and analog, Daniela has been drawn towards photographing her fears and anxieties making every project she completes have a deeply personal connection to the artist. Whether it be pursuing underwater photography with a fear of open water or using her mouth as the camera to apologize to those she has hurt in the past, Daniela is drawn to experimental and experiential processes that allow her to face her fears and anxieties head on. Katie McGowan is a lensbased artist living and working in New York City while pursuing a BFA in photography and imaging from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Working primarily with view cameras, she mediates spaces with an eye to the banal. After spending half of her life in Texas and the other in California, her work takes a particular interest in political polarization and Americana. Sammy Ray is an artist originally from Fort Worth, TX and a graduate of NYU Tisch’s Department of Photography & Imaging. Unable to settle on how they want to get their points across, Sammy works through traditional and contemporary photographic mediums as well as with sound design and coding. Sammy lives in New York City and loves to rock climb and rave. Jack Seidenberg is a 35mm black and white street photographer based in New York City. Raised in New Jersey, Seidenberg’s first expressive medium was music. This lead him to start studying jazz performance and ethnomusicology at New York University in the fall of 2015. In July of 2017 while on a leave from school, Seidenberg shot his first roll after buying
a cheap 35mm camera off a coworker at a local coffee shop. A year later in the fall of 2018, Seidenberg moved back to New York City and resumed his studies after his acceptance to Tisch’s Department of Photography and Imaging. Seidenberg is currently working on two longterm documentary projects. In South Williamsburg, Seidenberg takes photographs of the Satmar dynasty of Hassidic Jews. With the series, Seidenberg tries to expose the intimacy of an otherwise reserved and tight-knit community. Following his passion for music, Seidenberg photographs the New York jazz scene. He has worked with artists spanning the genre from Lee Konitz to Thundercat. In April of 2020, Seidenberg’s student thesis, Seven Stars, will be exhibited as part of the NYU DPI senior show. The project is a collection of silver prints of street photography in Tokyo, inspired by the isolation and emotional alienation found in Japanese literature. Earlier this year, Seidenberg received the Thomas Drysdale Fund Award for Seven Stars. Robin Takami is a JapaneseAmerican photographer and writer based in New York City. He is currently a senior in the Photography and Imaging BFA program at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. A native of Seattle, Washington, he learned photography while exploring his natural surroundings. His work falls between photojournalism and editorial photography and frequently incorporates themes of the natural, surreal, and ephemeral. Katerina Voegtle is a multidisciplinary artist whose work deals with themes of U.S. nationalism and national myths. She is interested in the violent melding of fact and fiction in the creation of the nation, and how this interplays with race, gender, and performance.
Kalean! - Basque Youth in the Late 2010’s is a documentary photo project which consists of a collection of photographs shot over the course of three different trips to the Basque Country. The project is realized in the form of a book and wall installation which function as a documentation of the ways in which modern leftist and independentist Basque youth display their cultural identities through both the revival of traditional displays of public performance arts such as dancing and playing music, as well as participation in Basque politics through a multi-faceted, politically oriented support system created through bar-hopping and protest attendance. I aim for these photos to demonstrate the highly unique culture and political atmosphere of a region whose goal of independence is not only obscured in this time of chaos throughout the rest of Spain–where there has been a rise in right-wing extremism–but is also so often overshadowed in American media by the independence movement of the Basque people’s Catalonian neighbors. Finally, the photographs do not show a new form of civic unrest in the Basque Country but rather intend to highlight how public displays of politics are a part of how young leftist Basques engage with their cultural identity and history through acts of mixing politics and pleasure, from the point of view of an outsider graciously welcomed in.
Start of Aste Nagusia, Digital Inkjet Print, 21×14 in. 2019 Iñaki and Ainhoa in Casco Viejo, Digital Inkjet Print, 21×14 in. 2017 Building the Kaskagorri Txosna, Digital Inkjet Print, 21×14 in. 2019 Kalera!, Digital Inkjet Print, 21×14 in. 2018 Playing Dice at Kirruli, Digital Inkjet Print, 21×14 in. 2017
Sombrero Shadow, San Antonio, Texas, Digital C Print, 2019 Untitled, San Antonio, Texas, Digital C Print, 2019 Charro, San Antonio, Texas, Digital C Print, 2019 Escaramuza, San Antonio, Texas, Digital C Print, 2019 Generations, San Antonio, Texas, Digital C Print, 2019
This project, Charrería, aims to document the charrería, the equestrian tradition of Mexico, within San Antonio, Texas in the United States. The figure of the charro traces back to the Spanish conquistadores and Mexican haciendas. Following the Mexican Revolution, and the division of many haciendas, the Charros sought to maintain tradition through establishing the Asociación Nacional de Charros in 1921 and then establishing the charreada (seen as the forerunner of the American rodeo) as Mexico’s national sport in 1933. Asociación de Charros de San Antonio was established in 1947, the first in the United States, as a way to preserve and honor charrería for future generations. The charros compete in a series of events at the charreada to show the skill of the rider and the horse. While many of the events in the charreada are dominated by men, the women ride in intricate choreography at a gallop side saddle in an event called escaramuza.
New York Climate: 2020; New York City has 520 miles of coast line. Some areas of New York are already seeing the effects of climate change. It is not just heat waves, which are increasing in intensity, frequency, and duration everywhere, but also effects that are unique to New York. Many neighborhoods along the New York City coast are at sea level, and some are already inundated multiple times a month at king tide events and with every storm surge. The areas hit hardest by Sandy are the same areas facing the most bracing prospects of the Climate Crisis. The Rockaways, Southeast Queens, Jamaica Bay, Southeast Brooklyn, and the east coast of Staten Island are all facing imminent destruction: either from the slow, creeping sea level rise that will see much of the area below projected sea levels by 2080, a time well within my lifetime, let alone that of children being born now; or from the next Sandy, a storm that is still very much present in the everyday lives of people in these areas of the outer-boroughs where the recovery is still very much under way. As we contend with the inevitability of Climate Change, it is necessary to take a moment to recognize the effects that have already begun and appreciate the full scope should we act or allow it to go unchecked.
A house at the end of the Calhoun Road in Old Hamilton Beach is surrounded by shin-deep flood water during the September king tide flooding.
A girl riding a bike pulls up her feet to avoid being drenched by tidal flood waters that have breached the sidewalk.
A Trump 2020 flag flies in a canalside backyard during the October King Tide.
A street dead ending on a canal in Hamilton Beach begins to flood as high tide approaches.
Dusk Over Calhoun Road, Digital Inkjet Print, 18 × 27 in., 2019 Biking in Broad Channel, Digital Inkjet Print, 8 × 12 in., 2019 Trump Country, Digital Inkjet Print, 8 × 12 in., 2019 Dead End, Digital Inkjet Print, 8 × 12 in., 2019
Reaching for the Kaaba, 2019, Digital C-Print, 11 × 14 in. Officers, Mecca, 2019, Digital C-Print, 11 × 14 in. Waiting for the Call To Prayer, 2019, Digital C-Print, 11 × 14 in. Officer Praying, 2019, Digital C-Print, 11 × 14 in. Photographing, 2019, Digital C-Print, 11 × 14 in.
Hajji, when directly translated from Arabic, is someone who has completed Hajj, the higher of two pilgrimages in Islam. In its contemporary usage, it is used by locals in Mecca to refer to any outsider who is in Saudi Arabia, with little regard of the person’s status as a pilgrim. After the US occupation of the Middle East in the early 2000s, hajji devolved into a derogatory term used by mainly American military and Europeans to refer to Middle Eastern, North African, and West and South Asian people overall.
The project stems from my attempt to define the term “authenticity,” while in the process realising the limit of such crass dichotomy between real and fake. We are all prisoners of our body with a limited amount of sensory organs limited by certain range or frequencies. Our perception is tainted by our past experiences. We are confined in time, blissfully ignorant of the future or the past. We play different language games despite using the same language. Even science is limited by our imagination and the set of tools we use, making it just another interpretation of the reality like any other religions or beliefs — a methodology that is flawed from its birth. “Authenticity” therefore becomes an elusive term constructed by perception filtered through these limitations. Truth never occurs outside our own selves. Life is but a system open to the rains that fall at intervals. Things have no conceivable intrinsic value, and the poetic parallel only flourish in an inner dimension. We see truth not in the reality of appearances but in the reality of thoughts. The project is an attempt of utilising this mechanism; a collection of interlinking images that takes on the documentary style, yet contains little information that would potentially pin them down to a specific place/time. The end result would ideally be a collection of images that will work together as a fictional documentary or an illusion of a truthful story.
Autocorrelations 6, Autocorrelations 5, Autocorrelations 9, Autocorrelations 2, Autocorrelations 8, Autocorrelations 7,
20 × 25 in. 12 × 15 in. 4 × 5 in. 8 × 10 in. 3.125 × 2.5 in. 4 × 5 in.
Untitled #1, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019 Untitled #2, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019 Untitled #3, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019 Untitled #4, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019
Pamiętasz? (Do You Remember?) is an exploration of the reliability of human memory, specifically the unreliable nature of my own. Through these (re)compositions of my family archive, I explore the ready-made realities of my past and simultaneously form new interpretations. “...the coupling of two realities, irreconcilable in appearance, upon a plane which apparently does not suit them…. These visions called themselves new planes, because of their meeting in a new unknown (the plane of non-agreement).” ― Max Ernst, “What is the Mechanism of Collage?”, 1936
What does it mean to not know exactly where you come from? The unknown is a familiar concept for many adoptees, but its role in each life is unique to the individual. Whether it is a small, large, or lingering aspect of daily life, it changes. Nakry Nakry is a series of six photo collages in which I confront a myriad of unknowns about my adoption from Cambodia. Through the amalgamation of past and recent photographs, I retrace the locations my mother went on her trip to adopt me. My process of taping, scanning, and reprinting, seeks to distance subjects from original images, reflecting my individual distance from my birthplace. Cutting photographs and piecing them back together with tape symbolizes an ever-changing narrative negating the constraints of time and space. I may never know the specific details about where I came from—my exact birth time, the location where I was born, or who my birth parents are. Such details have become less important with time as I grow with the unknown.
Kampong Speu Orphanage I, Digital Inkjet Print, 14 × 21 in. 2019 Sunway Hotel, Digital Inkjet Print, 14 × 21 in. 2019 Phnom Penh, Digital Inkjet Print, 14 × 21 in. 2019 Lucky Supermarket, Digital Inkjet Print, 14 × 21 in. 2019 Health Clinic, Digital Inkjet Print, 14 × 21 in. 2019 Kampong Speu Orphanage II, Digital Inkjet Print, 14 × 21 in. 2019
Remember the time, Threeâ&#x20AC;&#x2030;Channel 4K Video, 2019
â&#x20AC;&#x2022; Lang Leav
You and I against a rule, set for us by time. A marker drawn to show our end etched into its line. The briefest moment shared with you-the longest on my mind.
Left Unsaid is about healing and coming to terms with past mistakes. Using her mouth as the physical camera, she apologizes for the hurtful words that were once spoken and captures the moment when what has been left unsaid for so long is finally expressed. These images portray the people she holds closest and the damaged relationships that have just begun to mend. The abstract dark aesthetic of the portraits portrays the conflicting feelings, painful history, and heightened tension that surround these memories and relationships. The abnormal shapes of the photographs are due to the fact that the artist had to individually cut each frame of film in complete darkness in order to fit the film in her mouth. The image is then created as she opens her mouth exposing the film to light as she engages with her subjects. The scratches and imperfections seen on the negatives are a result of having to handle the pieces of film in unusual ways and from having to develop each frame one-by-one.
Robbie, Digital Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in. 2019. Paul, Digital Inkjet Print, 20 × 30.345 in. 2019. Letty, Digital Inkjet Print, 20 × 26.667 in. 2019. Michael, Digital Inkjet Print, 20 × 27.586 in. 2019.
Idaho, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 Texas, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 Ohio, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 New Mexico, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 Maryland, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 Florida, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 Connecticut, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019 Alaska, Digital C-Print, 20 × 24 in., 2019
Borders have always been points of contention. Within the United States, natural topography and arbitrarily drawn lines assert identities, laws and territorial authority. States garner and promote their myths and legends, each one seemingly more unique than the next. Populations flock to California, Texas, and Florida which have the most pretentions; the other 47 jockey for relative identity. With issues of polarization, the electorate and immigration, these landscapes present a challenging similarity. Singularities fade across the wide-open spaces of America. We sequester our respective terrain for fear of becoming over run or crowded. Emptiness and hints of human influence inform fields of grain, connecting east and west, north to south. Division seems arbitrary in the face of such geophysical continuity.
These images are distorted, the subject within them living in a mutable state shaped by a randomizing sequence of color and sound. The changing nature of the work seeks to engage inquiry into what meaning is or could be suggested. Within that inquiry, one may begin to wonder more. Wonder more about where their own mind takes them and, more importantly, why. This work stems partially from frustration with photography’s ability to impose itself as truth, sometimes at the detriment of those being depicted. But by working with the digital image broken down to its pixels and physically constructing the image by hand, the subjective and expressive nature of the medium is forced to the forefront. With no realism to latch onto, viewers must work a little harder to find something. The subject’s movements never establish a single mood, further changing meaning with the unsequenced original sound. The evolving interaction between viewer, subject, and artist provides a meditative space where one can reflect on how they interact with imagery in the world. These panels would have been impossible for me to create alone and I thank Adam Rokhsar and Quin Scacheri for their coding expertise as well as Mario Camilleri for his carpentry in constructing the mounts.
Detail from Untitled Impressions, 2019-2020. Randomized Sequence, Clips range:1-4 minutes. Wood, LED Strips, Acrylic, Arduino. Soundtrack written, performed and mastered by Sammy Ray.
81-32, Fiber Silver Print, 11 × 14 in., 2019 79-14, Fiber Silver Print, 11 × 14 in., 2019 295-21, Fiber Silver Print, 11 × 14 in., 2019 313-32, Fiber Silver Print, 11 × 14 in., 2019 305-13, Fiber Silver Print, 11 × 14 in., 2019
Seven Stars; Before I first picked up a camera, the closest thing that I could do to keep myself tethered to reality was to read Japanese literature. I was far from comfortable in my head so why not indulge in some attempted escapism by reading Dazai, Murakami, Mishima, and Soseki? As a result, Tokyo became a romanticized place for me to fantasize being existentially confused in. I went on a search to find the isolation and emotional alienation described by my favorite authors’ Tokyo. I was quickly taken by the sense of purpose people had on the streets. With my rangefinder, I traversed the city to see if I could learn anything about the human condition reflexively taking photographs. I could not tell if the frantic energy on the streets was people running towards their destination, or a way of escaping themselves. But how much of my existential woes and anxiety was I projecting onto my subjects? By running to Tokyo, was I just trying to run from my lack of purpose or was it an honest attempt to open up emotionally in a different context? With the sensibility of a flaneur, I captured the urban strangeness and characters I passed while contemplating those questions.
Despite the deeply individualistic values of American culture, many workers—even those crucial to our collective social and economic development—can become invisible in the structure and scale of bureaucracy. The massive systems composing our social and material infrastructures have a tendency to mask the labor of the individuals supporting them. Who is teaching our children, or delivering our mail? As an act of recognition and celebration, this project uses portraiture to visualize the people whose livelihoods serve their community. Whitebox is a portrait series about the role of the individual within systems of labor, and the medium of portraiture itself. These compositions seek to formalize the portrait while situating each subject in their workplace. By referencing studio iconography, these environmental portraits place visual emphasis on the worker, simultaneously making visible the conventions of portraiture and contextualizing individual labor.
Mark, a letter carrier at USPS Cooper Station in the East Village, NY, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019 Busola, a nurse in midtown Manhattan, NY, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019 (3356) Debrina, a thrift store employee in Red Hook, Brooklyn, NY, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019 Riley, a thrift store employee in Red Hook, Brooklyn, NY, Inkjet Print, 20 × 30 in., 2019
Marlboro Man, Inkjet Print, variable dimensions. 2019 Untitled (Dad’s Tattoo), Inkjet Print, variable dimensions. 2019 Untitled (Brother in Uniform), Inkjet Print, variable dimensions. 2017 Untitled (Dad and Brother), Inkjet Print, variable dimensions. 2018 La Pietà, Inkjet Print, variable dimensions. 2018 Untitled (Me Offstage), Inkjet Print, variable dimensions. 2019
Fatherland is an umbilical tug-of-war, an untangling and re-tangling of fraught relationships with father and with nation, which not only parallel, but interweave, intertwine, and knot. It is a glimpse behind the curtain of the mythologies and fantasies of the American Dream, which blur into the living of daily life in the U.S. to the point of being indistinguishable. In examining my relationship to my father and the empire into which I was born, I seek to interrogate the way in which this mythology, including pop culture and repeated national narratives, merge with daily life, and how these ideas are transmitted through the family structure to create the national subject. While this series has a national focus, interested in the fantasies that allow for the perpetuation of the violence that underlies U.S. culture and foreign and domestic policy, it is grounded in my own deeply patriotic military family, particularly my father’s relationship with my brother and I. The Hollywood glamour of Top Gun and t-shirts sporting “9/11 Never Forget” are not separate from my father’s enlistment in the Navy. And his influence (and, in a different way, that of my mother) is definitely not separate from my brother joining the Army, after having been groomed for it through movies, sports, Boy Scout meetings, and dinner table discussions. Fatherland exploits my position straddling the division between inside and outside, having a front-row look into U.S. nationalism, yet remaining critical of what it represents and perpetuates. In doing so, I look to examine not only the foundations of nationalism, but my own complicity in it. To create a believable narrative for the American public to buy into, the strings must be tucked away, the show must be believable, well-rehearsed– the State and status quo depend on it. But what happens when the Dream is denaturalized, when its performative nature is betrayed by the tag of a costume, the edge of a backdrop? At an absolutely critical political moment to investigate the roots of U.S. nationalism and militarism, it is vital to dwell in that space between attraction and repulsion, to hold in both hands the humor, allure, and nostalgia of nationhood, at the same time as the violence of its colonial, imperial past and present, its exploitation of both people and the land.
Solastalgia (/ˌsɒləˈstældʒə/) is a neologism coined by Australian philosopher Glenn Albrecht in 2003 to describe a form of mental or existential distress caused by environmental change. The word stems from the latin sōlācium, meaning comfort, and -algia, meaning pain. In 2015, solastalgia was included as a contributing concept in the impact of Climate Change on Human Health and Wellbeing. Although this state is most pertinent to those directly affected by climate change, communities that are displaced due to drought, mining or (un)natural disasters, those facing relocation, the phenomenon has been observed for example, in scientists studying the bleaching of the coral reefs, or activists on the frontlines of the resistace. I believe that on a different scale (one where the effects of the crisis have not yet been fully manifested, in a place of relative privilege), this is the feeling that forces us to act. Solastalgia is the measure of human distress in response to worldwide ecosystem distress syndromes. It shows that our removal from nature might not be as severe, if we are feeling the pain we ourselves have inflicted on the Earth. I’ve retraced my path through the environmental justice movement, to start in the place I grew up in, next to a beautiful lake on the edge of the Bohemian forest, the place that first showed me the small injustices inflicted on the great web of life everyday, the small cause and effect relationships that I later saw unravel on a scale of global proportions, and I believe it is the same behaviour, our role outside of the Web of life, removed from nature and placed above it, that causes our collective actions to resemble more those of a parasite.
Uncertain Horizons, Digital Print, 43 × 57 in., 2019 Kůrovec, Silver Gelatine Contact Print, 4 × 5 in., 2019 The World Is Not Your Oyster, Silver Gelatine Contact Print, 4 × 5 in., 2019 Parasite, Silver Gelatine Contact Print, 8 × 10 in., 2019 Uprooted, Silver Gelatine Contact Print, 8 × 10 in., 2019 Bude Sucho, Screenprint, 12 × 12 in., 2019 Untitled Diptych, Silver Gelatine Prints, 2 × 7 × 11 in., 2019 Untitled Panorama, Silver Gelatine Contact Print, 4 × 6 in., 2019 Untitled, Silver Gelatine Print, 10 × 15 in., 2019 Untitled Diptych (The Last Alleyway and The Black Snake), Silver Gelatine Prints, 2 × 7 × 11 in., 2019 Untitled triptych, Silver Gelatine Prints, 7 × 11 in., 8 × 11in., 7 × 11 in., 2019 Floating, Inkjet Print, 17 × 24 in., 2019 Untitled, 10 Stacked Silver Gelatine Contacts, 4 × 5 in., 2019
Escape, Photography, Inkjet Print, 80 × 150 cm / 40 × 60 cm, 2020
In my work, I focus on the transformation of symbols in time. I am especially interested in their possible new meanings for the present. I select visual and cultural elements from the past and examine their validity and the possibilities that take place in the current context. I layer and blend links that create a whole new look at the deep-rooted archetypes and symbols, such as scythes, bread or neolithic statuettes. I mainly use objects, video or audio to portray these topics. I connect these objects to intermedia installations that create an overall message of the topic. In my new project, I try to express everything using only one medium, the photographic image. All is expressed in one place, in one view, in a frozen moment. Maybe now is the right time to go back to my core medium. To simplify the story about changing the meaning of bread, which becomes a petrified product and a form of entertainment. It reflects the memory of the relationship between man and this food, when they communicated together at a different level than today. We are at the point of a newly formed scythe meditation that will help us connect better with our ancestors, their handicrafts and nature. The neolithic statuette is reduced to a basic spatial arrangement, placed in a completely different optics than the one we normally perceive in prehistoric statuettes. They point to human qualities that are stable and unchangeable despite all current cultural circumstances. They are the true bearers of the present icons. The aim of the photographs is to bring the viewer to the crucial moment when they realize the absurdity of the connection of these symbols in today's world, in contrast to the past.
“Beginning statements with a (fake) quote significantly improves retention” – Anonymous Does anyone ever read all these artist statements? If you’ve reached this far, we must take a moment to acknowledge your patience and our collective privilege to life. We are privileged to have the freedom and time for artistic expression. Throughout my personal experience, challenging norms and conventions via dialogues has fascinated me. How memories are assigned, accessed and influenced by physical and subconscious images while continuously adding layers and meanings with time is a theme which I constantly revisit. These ideas are explored through my work where I deconstruct emotions in an attempt to redefine the notion of taboo, value or exclusivity. The vision of my current area of exploration through photography aims at breaking the bi-dimensional perception of images, while pushing the boundaries of technological possibilities.
Suicidal Objexts, Silver Gelatin photogram digitally reprinted on matt litho-realistic paper, 50cm× 66.6cm, 2020 (1 of 9)
1. Untitled, Inkjet Print, 31.5 × 17.7 cm, 2008–2020 2. Untitled, Inkjet Print, 31.5 × 17.7 cm, 2008–2020 3. Untitled, Inkjet Print, 31.5 × 17.7 cm, 2008–2020
One’s photographic archive can be approached not only as a document of past events, telling a story, but it can also be an opportunity to explore the memory space as a completely new, undiscovered landscape. As a source material for my work, I used archive photographs taken during a few consecutive summers between 2008 and 2013 in Saint-Petersburg, Russia. Depicting mostly seascapes and local beaches, taken on infrared technical film with a wide-angle lens and originally intended to be simple black and white landscapes, now look more like a record from a CCTV camera. After revisiting these images I started to enlarge and print small parts of selected negatives, focusing on details never meant to be the main subject of the initial photograph. Zooming in to the level of the medium reveals a different type of imagery. Details erode under the beam of light falling to the surface of a copy film. In contact with the materiality of the medium, memories dissolve into patterns of particles. The context disappears. Everyday stories turn into universal images, resembling illustrations of spiritual experiences — anonymous glowing bodies travelling through deserted space —, perhaps, everyone had a similar dream or nightmare at least once.
I have created a large camera obscura from a ground floor room in a family house (4x5 meters with windows on its longer side facing southeast). The room was completely darkened and one hole, 15 mm in diameter, was placed in the center of one of its windows. On 22 May 2018 at 8:30 AM I sat in the projection of the camera obscura. I spent 8 hours in a meditative state with only the hole in the window being my connection with the outside world. The camera obscura represents a personâ&#x20AC;&#x2DC;s consciousness. From my position, I see nothing except for a bright dot. The image of the outside world is coming inside through the opening. The image is changed, flipped upside down. The hole of the camera represents an ego. The point of meditation is to forget the ego, not to let it talk, to become objective and forget about being subjective. I enter the room and become sensitive layer myself. My body represents a clean and clear mind. This mind is small compared to the vastness of the outside world. In this allegory, the mind becomes part of the world as it merges with the space and becomes nothing and everything simultaneously.
Camera Obscura 2018, Timelapse Video, 2:51 min, 2018
Mood Board, Inkjet Print 24 × 30 cm, 2020 Time Fraction 04, 07, Inkjet Print 24 × 30 cm, 2019–2020
The selected works demonstrate my current way of working with symbols associated with temporality and photography. I employ a series of small-size canvases, in the format of standard holiday snapshots. The "time fraction" series allowed me to feel free and situate symbols in a particular aesthetic frame using drawing, collage, or modifying the canvas with other materials such as plastic relief structures. From this position, I started thinking about bigger formats of canvas and more complex compositions. One of my inspirations for this canvas was the principle of a "sound system" commonly used in electronic music. It is, basically, a music track created from all the sounds available in the producer's sound bank then I move to the fashion industry mood boards used in designing a new collection. The final form combines various symbols of time and photography such as the checkered flag, a spider web, a plastic pocket with sand or a modified catalogue page from Jan Svoboda's exhibition.
Runit Dome is a nuclear waste repository located in the Marshall Islands on a small island of the Enewetak Atoll. Containing nearly 75,000 cubic meters of plutonium contaminated soil and debris within a 46 centimeter thick, 115 meter wide concrete dome, it was constructed by the United States in 1977 in order to deal with the radioactive waste it left behind after years of atomic bomb testing on Enewetak and its neighboring atoll Bikini between 1946 and 1958. The 67 thermo-nuclear tests conducted there equate to about 1.6 times the destructive power of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima (24 kilo tons) every single day for 12 years. The dome, or ‘Tomb’, as it is locally referred to, lies at sea level. According to recent scientific and journalistic reports, the concrete cover is cracking due to wear caused by ocean tides and is leaking highly radioactive waste into the Pacific at this very moment. As sea levels are projected to continually rise, the Runit Dome nuclear waste site will be underwater within this century, along with many populated regions of the Marshall Islands. The concrete photographic fragments in this work are excavations of documents uncovered which are to bring attention to the buried historical events surrounding the Marshallese people and the imperial injustices committed by United States against them. Runit Dome, a gravestone for its dark past, is today also becoming a symbol for the anthropocene. It is a place like no other, where the fiery nuclear legacy of our past intersects with the dawn of climate change in a way that is visibly unprecedented and hard to ignore.
Radioactive metal debris on Enewetak Atoll before the clean-up began (1977), C-print, 18 × 24 cm, 2019
The multi-camera filming of Commodore Wyatt “consulting” the Bikinians about their evacuation (March 6, 1946), C-print, 18 × 24 cm, 2019
Bleached coral on a fringing reef at Enewetak Atoll (1974), C-print, 18 × 18 cm, 2019
Dr. Robert Conard examines Rongelapese boy Hiroshi Kebenli after ‘Bravo’ fallout (March, 1954), C-print, 18 × 12 cm, 2019
U.S. troops sent to Enewetak to decontaminate plutonium waste (1977-1979), C-print, 18 × 27 cm, 2019
Two goats tethered on the deck of a ship moored at Bikini Atoll prior to an atomic bomb test (June, 1946), C-print, 18 × 18 cm, 2019
161 residents of Bikini Island board LST 1108 as they are relocated from the atoll (March 7, 1946), C-print, 18 × 24 cm, 2019
Vice Admiral William Blandy, his wife and Rear Admiral Frank Lowry cutting into a mushroom cloud cake (November 7, 1946), C-print, 18 × 27 cm, 2019
A child from Rongelap showing acute effects from radiation exposure after ‘Bravo’ (1954), C-print, 18 × 18 cm, 2019
Moloch3.0, Digital Print, 125 × 177 cm, 2019
I am covered in slime. The poison is leaking from all my parts. I can feel the infection slowly steaming to the surface. The whole essence is changing and revealing its new principle.
Long time ago the only people able to travel globally besides the rich were cargo workers. They were the romanticized free souls of the world, being able to see it with their own eyes. They were explorers eager to see what was behind the curtains of their home. Free man/restricted man peeks into the banality of a modern day cargoworker; a trucker. Freedom turned into restriction and uniqueness into standardization. Commercial flying was introduced in the late 1950s. In a blink of an eye the perspective of time and distance changed for masses of people. Traveling became easy. The effort of getting from A to B was scaled down into a matter of hours. The exploration of the world became leisure time for the common man, while it was stripped away from the dream of a cargo worker. The need of moving goods increased, time compressed as technology improved. The box container was introduced but the length of the road stayed the same. While the common man was freed from the restrictions of time, the idea of a wandering soul, the cargo worker and now the modern day trucker, was slowly vanishing. The free man is instructed in a compelling manner when to drive, when to stop, for how long and where, monitored by a minute schedule. The free man was turned into a factory worker, whose conveyor belt is the road. Exploring the world became looking into the endless grey highway.
Free Man/Restricted Man, Video on Loop, 2020
Welcome to Ekuubis, Video, Monitor Size, 2019
In 2014, the Estonian government decided to become a fully digital state with electronic voting, IDs, drivers licenses where every document could be signed from the comfort of home. Included in this program was the now famous e-Residency offering any foreigner to work or sell his product in Estonia, without stepping foot in Europe. To promote the agenda, an educational program in the form of a multiplayer video game began, teaching high school children how to file an application for this new ID or how to open a bank account. As practical as this sounds the game was a failure. Today, if you log in, there is nobody there. The game environment is abandoned. In the tens of hours I spent in the cities of Saturn and Neptune, I had only one encounter with another person. A nice guy at first, who later came out as a hardcore Nazi and a LGBT-basher. “Welcome to Ekuubis” spins a fictional narrative around this video game inspired by the rising number of right wing or even fascist parties across (not only) Europe. A promotional video, looking like something you would find on the World Expo a few years back, telling the fictional history of a place, where the only thing you can do is fill out forms. This creates a nationalistic backstory for a digital state. An absurd idea of a place, where different religions or races can share the same right wing nationalistic ideas, combined from Orbán’s Fidesz traditionalism to Chinese techno-optimism.
Gabriela BK is a Czech-American activist and visual artist currently based in Prague, Czech Republic. She completed her high school education in the Czech Republic, Germany and California, and continued at UC Santa Cruz. She is currently studying photography at the FAMU Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. In 2016 she joined the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation to join the resistance against the Dakota Access Pipeline, where she spent two years as an ally to the Indigenous-led movement. In 2018 she returned to the Czech Republic to continue her college education, where she is involved in the climate justice movement and works with various non-profit and grassroots organizations. Gabriela BK is a writer for the Polagraph Magazine and is Program Manager for ArtDialog’s Center for Creativite Sustainability, ArtMill. Her photographic work has various focuses, from psychology and the destigmatisation of mental health, to art as activism and the deconstruction of the photographic medium itself. In her works, Veronika Čechmánková focuses mainly on the transformations of symbols and traditions in time. She studies at the Studio of Photography and New Media at FAMU and exhibited her works at the FUTURA gallery in Prague, the Vortex Studio in Arles and at the BF Artist Film Festival in London. In 2019, she was a finalist in the Other Visions competition at the PAF festival in Olomouc. Her works were published in the publication FRESH EYES – a celebration of the best photography talent in Europe.
communications and user experience design eventually led him to study photography at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (FAMU). In the classical studio he is exploring the boundaries of photography. Inspired by the Czech philosopher & theorist Vilem Flusser, his work has focused on deconstructing the medium and form. In 2018, Lonely Planet Magazine published his photograph titled “deconstruct” as one of the cover pages for its 100th anniversary edition. His passion for collecting stories behind people, places and photographs has been noted in journals since 2001. During the summer of 2019, he revisited this passion by hitchhiking across Europe for three months while relying on the kindness and cruelty of strangers. Being primarily experimental in nature, exploring the merging of memory, identity and society; his works have been exhibited in selected galleries across Ahmedabad, Pune, Prague and Beroun. Born in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, Eugene Martikainen is the student of the Master’s program in Photography at FAMU in Prague. He also holds a master's degree in Microelectronics, Telecommunication and Multimedia from ITMO University, Saint-Petersburg. Due to his engineering background, his main interest lays in the connections between art and science. He lives and works in Prague.
Adam Mička, born 6 January 1990 in Beroun, Czech Republic. He had no formal art or photography education before entering FAMU. His huge interest in photography flourished in his early 20s Ranaji Deb is a storyteller born during travels around the in Agartala, India. Growing up globe. His biggest interests in the suburbs of Bombay he and themes are alternative developed a curiosity towards lifestyle, mind, body and nature, relationships and tech- nature. He usually uses very nology. Having a background classical non-digital means education from diverse fields of photography to express of bioinformatics, marketing himself.
Jiří Procházka is a mixed media artist deconstructing the medium of photography to show how it could change our lives in the context of non-linear time perception. His work takes up the attempt to reach abstract photography in the full meaning of this term and follows, in a specific way, Jan Svoboda’s concept of non-visual photography from the early 1980s.
the graphic side of visual arts and deals with topics such as temporality, visual communication or the form itself. His visual tools employ work with colour symbolism, structures, fake 3D or various materials.
Leevi Toija (born 1998 in Helsinki, Finland) is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in Prague, Czech Republic in the Department of photography at FAMU (Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts Alexander Rossa is an American artist and currently in Prague). His works are influenced by individuals’ afflictions, a post-graduate student of Photography at The Academy portraying his dissenting views of Performing Arts in Prague. on our contemporary society. Toija’s working medium varies His inspirations include from moving to still images and abstract topics; such as the different ways one perceives all the way to 3D objects. time, space, and where the Max Vajt is an artist, born in human experience meets these things. He is interested 1997 in Prague, where he lives in the language and syntax of and works. He currently studies images and how they can be Photography in the New Media reconfigured to create new and Studio at FAMU. His work is more complete meanings. The mainly centered around video notion that truth is complicated games, which he uses either as and multi layered is reflected in a tool to tell his own narratives his work. He mainly works in a or as a limitless pool of ideas hybrid form of collage, photog- to explore. Almost every other raphy, painting, solvent appli- person is a gamer and the cation, and scanography. In all space of games has been deof his work he aims to create mystified, meaning that a game images that make the viewer can be easily approached and feel as if they are immersed in is usually understood in the a sort of archeological mission broader world of other games. to find the truth and meaning of Interactivity is a key element for our current image culture, how Vajt to let the audience engage it aims to take advantage of us, with his stories, even as they and how we can use it to push fail in an attempt to really make back and make it represent the a difference. His long term projects, covering the span of best ideas of human identity years, usually come as a bunin all its eccentric forms. He dle of individual story pockets, has held solo exhibitions in Trenton and Sparta NJ, as well unwrapped one by one with no real ending or climax. Cyclic as participated in a number and non-linear storytelling, of group shows across the Czech Republic, Germany, and where time and space are Israel. In 2019 he received an compressed and stretched Honorable Mention for Photo- never let the viewer settle or feel comfortable. His characters graphic Arts from the annual St. Catherine’s Festival of the are flung around as if they were toys on a playground giving Arts in Ringwood NJ. a sense of a naive search for Borek Smažinka is a contem- meaning or solutions, which, porary artist based in Prague. at the same time, always slip in between fingers. His usage He studies at the intermedia of media spans from videos studio of the department of to podcasts, prints or video photography at FAMU in Prague. He mainly focuses on games.
Department of Photography, FAMU in Prague Department of Photography and Imaging, NYU Tisch School of the Arts, New York The Department of Photography and Imaging (DPI) at NYU Tisch School of the Arts in New York City is pleased to have our Quadrennial Exhibition Exchange with the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts (FAMU) in Prague, Czech Republic. For our first collaboration in 2016, 12 DPI seniors showed excerpts from their senior theses in Galerie AMU, Prague while a select group of FAMU students exhibited their work in the DPI Galleries, New York. The four years since 2016 have brought major sociopolitical changes to our world and now the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically altered our lives. The work of 14 graduating DPI seniors as well as 10 current FAMU students participating in the exhibition exchange was made in a pre-pandemic world and is a small and yet exciting sample of what the graduates are exhibiting in their thesis shows and or final presentations. Currently, due to COVID-19, both Galerie AMU and the DPI Galleries have been closed and our exhibitions are unable to take place in a physical space. This catalog and the accompanying online exhibition honor the vision, tenacity, and hard work of our DPI seniors and their counterparts from FAMU. w/ Ari Adams Taylor Bissey Nina Dietz Raafae Ghory Junyan Hu Karolina Lajch Phoebe Lincoln Liu Liu Daniela Loya Katie McGowan Sammy Ray Jack Seidenberg Robin Takami Katerina Voegtle
Gabriela BK Veronika Čechmánková Ranaji Deb Eugene Martikainen Adam Mička Jiří Procházka Alexander Rossa Borek Smažinka Leevi Toija Max Vajt
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We are extending our special thanks to Dean Allyson Green and to our DPI Chair, Dr. Deborah Willis for their generous support of this project. Thank you also to Edgar Castillo, Niki Kekos, Patricia McKelvin, Mary Notari, Adam Ryder and Caleb Savage for their tireless assistance and the DPI and FAMU artists for their participation. In Prague, our gratitude goes to Tomáš Dvořák, and Hana Šťastná for their vision and expertise in shaping this project and their support in making this exhibition exchange possible. ― Editha Mesina & Štěpánka Šimlová Curators and Organizers of On Freezing and Melting Time: Quadrennial Exhibition Exchange