In this exhibition, 6 Slovenian photographers present their visions of relations: Karmen Corak and Jakob Jugovic are from Italy, while Jadran Rusjan, Klemen Skubic, Nina Sotelšek and Arven Šakti Kralj are from Slovenia.
Arven Šakti Kralj composes her black-and-white photographs into diptychs and places them into associative relationships – images of girlhood and images of vegetation, blossoming – and, in her own words, juxtaposes women and flowers, delicate and fragile, but at the same time strong and tough, even provocative. The adolescent girl is uncertain about the future and her new role, she is left to fate or chance, like a bud (in winter). Even though the photographs show motionless black-and-white images, the truth is anything but that.
Nina Sotelšek refers to walking, which can also be interpreted as a time when discrepancies between the wish and the uttered and/or duty become visible in the mother-daughter relationship. (Similarly as in other relations between child and parent or between people who are close.) Even if we assume that good communication is part of a good relationship, conflicts can arise between two personalities who, for various (personal) reasons, find it difficult to tell each other everything that they might wish to. Only the voluntary “compulsion” to be together and isolation from their environment, such as going for a walk together, which sometimes resembles caring for a seriously ill person, allows those involved to share their deepest thoughts and disclose hidden feelings.
Jadran Rusjan, photographer and event documentarian, is a good connoisseur of the Forma viva (by the Piran Coastal Galleries) in Lucija. He is also often an eye-watcher of the sculpture-making process. In his series The Stone and I, he highlights the details of the stone that are frequently overlooked or considered as flaws in the material, which we therefore prefer not to see. The gap between what is and what we see or want to see is reduced in this series by focusing on these details, while at the same time revealing the gap itself.
The reflection of the environment on a smooth surface in a space, on the surface of an object like a sculpture or a painting, or the reflection of external light coming through a stained-glass window, like an illuminated fresco with an image of a woman … are just good examples of what we see. The physical phenomenon of the reflection of light into the functional eye enables us to see. What it sees depends on the viewer, his interests and attention.
Karmen Corak‘s photographs of the reflection of outside light on interior surfaces bring the viewer closer to the subject and direct them to what she herself has seen, but she does this in a way that misleads the viewer and often makes them wonder if they are actually seeing what they are seeing. In this dialogue with the photographer, the viewer is suddenly no longer alone.
Jakob Jugovic‘s stereophotos show the physical phenomenon of light refraction, in which the images of a pair of eyes are brought together to form a spatial image. White light is refracted into the spectral colours and the photographer reduces the image to individual complementary colours and prints some of them on the same background. The viewer has the option of separating the flat images of the individual colours into a left and a right, i.e. red and blue-green image, with the help of special red-green glasses, and the brain puts them together again (to form a three-dimensional image). A fly in an enlarged photo gets previously unseen details that can change the experience of the fly. Details also change the experience of something or someone in other ways.
Klemen Skubic prints his photos on a normal printer as a preview; the by-products are black and white prints that remain with the test photos after they are examined. Young children draw and write on everything they can get their hands on, and his daughters have used these working photos for colouring-in. Each of them has made a very personal “artistic” contribution by colouring the photos. The fact that the photographer is willing to exhibit his scrapped photos, coloured by his children, next to his good photos, shows and (un)voluntarily connects his relationship to photography, play and his children. The intervention (of a child) with colours turns a reproductive photograph into something unique.
It has been clear for some time that the Covid-19 pandemic has radically intervened in contemporary life, with restrictions, redirections of our attention, changing lifestyles as well as the impact on the environment, where the facemask has suddenly become an integral part and sign of the time. It has also influenced artists and their work. New relations have been forged that are in a constant flux of change.