Past exhibitions:

Ambient Landscape

Black Eye Gallery, Sydney
October 30-November 12, 2017

Alison Schmitz, Anita Marks, Anne Affortit, Aïsha Baert, Bastian Richter, Bob Scott, Brian S. Lee, Cathy Ronalds, Chiara Zonca, Cody Cobb, Daniel Pazdur, David Campbell, David Friske, Debbie O’Donnell, Ellen Jantzen, Emmanuel Monzon, Fransisca Angela, Graham White, Homer Liwag, Iris Van Loon, Jessica Cantlin, Johan Holmquist, John Andreas Godwin, Kiliii Yuyan, Marcela Gara, Maurizio Martorana, Michelle Lorén, Olga Gordienko, Paul McMillan, Sandra Ramos, Stein Jarle Nilsen, Stu Sontier, Suzan Pektas, Takeshi Suga, Thomas Papakostas, Tom McGahan, Tom Sullam and Zuzanna Szarek.

 

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There Won’t Be Any Other End of the World | Innego końca świata nie będzie 

National Museum in Gdansk | Gallery of Photography (Green Gate)
25 March - 17 June 2017


The title of the exhibition by Zuzanna Szarek and Hanna Śliwińska refers to the poem by Czesław Miłosz, A Song On the End of the World. The poet warns that the world may end suddenly, without any biblical signs appearing in the sky. What is common for the two photographers is the fear of the decline, fall, end of the world. “We are watching the reality which is heading towards destruction. It is not a linear process; there are turns, temporary recoveries, moments of spring and illusive hope. But there are always some places where trees are wilting, buildings are disappearing, rivers are diverting their waters and people are closing their eyes. Each of us tries, in her own way, to organize and accept this state of affairs" - say the artists. This vision of instability and volatility is the reason for collecting pictures from various geographic regions, natural landscapes, urban architecture and sometimes people. The fear of the “end” directs the artists’ lenses to colourful landscapes of mountains, seas and desserts, as well as ordinary cityscape. As the world is so volatile and our faith is uncertain, we should keep memories about it in the form of pictures which document the present time.
Zuzanna Szarek carefully selects her frames. She does not take pictures of momentous events, picturesque views or beautiful people. She is a documentarian of the day-to-day reality and she wants to commemorate the so-called mediocrity, apparent “nothing”. She feels that she does not surrender to the illusions of the world, she does not feel delight or despair. Her stoic reality is the balance of profit and loss. While choosing her frames, Hanna Śliwińska follows her intuition. She is not a rebel, however, she does not fully agree with the inevitable decline. She treats existence as a pause in non-existence. She tries to remember the world, see what is around her and keep momentary impressions. The main topic of her photography is the nature and its impenetrable force. She also focuses on people, the relation between nature and human physicality. The exhibition combines these two views about transience.
Hanna Śliwińska’s photographs are “more personal”. She portrays people and her presentations of nature are filled with deep nostalgia, whereas Zuzanna Szarek keeps the distance between the motives she portrays. The artists do not apply direct portrayals of the world's volatility and human fragility. There’s is no vision of places stricken by conflicts and wars, no Warhol-like series of disasters and fatalities. Using neutral motives, the artists have created a visual record which reflects their emotions - from fear to delight. The concept of the world without evil and death seems to be difficult. The promise of paradise is tempting but it may lead to disappointment: if beauty may be eternal and uninterrupted, maybe it is pointless to preserve what surrounds us? The same motives may seem trivial like “postcards from paradise”.
The pictures gathered by the two artists document the world’s beauty, as well as its mediocrity, and they lead the audience towards the affirmation of life. The civilization based on fear does not guarantee the development of societies. Although we sometimes sense the imminent Apocalypse, we want to believe that the foreseeable future will bring something better. The message of the exhibition is the sentence from Horace’s “Carpe diem”: live like tomorrow never comes.

Author: Mariola Balińska

 

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Tel Aviv, Promised Land
Służewski Dom Kultury
16 sierpnia 2016 – 30 sierpnia 2016

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„Tel Aviv, przestrzeń miejska w fotografii” to seria zdjęć dokumentujących subtelne fragmenty jednego miasta. Na pozór są to proste ujęcia, które powstają na marginesie podróży. Nie ma w nich typowych miejsc turystycznych, ani innych odniesień do konkretnego miasta. Szarek oddaje przestrzeń miejską jako anonimową, kreuje na miejsce uniwersalne – dosłowne – gdziekolwiek. Fragment plaży, elewacja modernistycznego budynku, kable i kamery przemysłowe, jak prawie wszędzie. Drobne elementy, po których możemy rozpoznawać konkretną przestrzeń, układają się jak puzzle w jeden obraz. Jest pełen sprzeczności, napięcia i daleki od wizji reklamowych. Miasto radości, wakacyjnego czasu, zatracenia i hedonizmu, które żyje w zagrożeniu i napięciu. Która część przeważy? Sodoma i Gomora leżały całkiem niedaleko, choć to przecież tylko mit. Tym bardziej anonimowość przestrzeni ze zdjęć, każe się ponownie zastanowić nad nośnością tej legendy.

Joanna Kinowska


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2016 Fotofestiwal Lodz OFFROAD: Zuzanna Szarek, Tel Aviv. Przestrzeń miejska w fotografii
 

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2016 Krakow Foto Fringe: Zuzanna Szarek,  Tel Aviv. Przestrzeń miejska w fotografii