exhibition of authors connected by Department of Photography of the Higher School of Applied Sciences
Jaka Arbutina, Tomaž Bevk, Andraž Bilmez, Boštjan Božič, Tatjana Cankar, Simon Chang, Peter Fettich, Jernej Čuček Gerbec, Peter Gorenšek, Anže Grabeljšek, Nataša Ilec, Davor Kralj, Primož Lukežič, David Mencinger, Bojan Mijatovič, Tilyen Mucik, Nik Neubauer, Matic Pandel, Borut Peterlin, Urša Premik, Peter Rauch, Lucija Rosc, Bojan Salaj, Bojan Šibenik, Marko Trebušak
Opening: 2 June at 9pm
Public underground shelter, Slovene Reformation Park, Ljubljana
What is the potential of photography today, when mobile phones can take more technically advanced photographs than digital cameras once did? Ever since the emergence of Kodak and its slogan “You Press the Button, We do the Rest”, this has been an increasingly common question. Perhaps each generation is asking its own questions, expanding the limits of the language of photography in its own way. And not just each generation, the same applies to each creative environment also. The artists exhibited at ISO0 were selected because they have an existing relationship with the Department of Photography of the Higher School of Applied Sciences (VIST), Ljubljana, and are making work that prompts a reflection upon the different faces of photographic creativity today. In some instances, this creativity stretches to a point where the audience may rightfully begin to question whether it is still photography at all.
The exhibition shows experiments with techniques and procedures, where the approaches are inseparably linked to the subject matter of the photographs. One can recognise a wide array of expressive means, with artists turning to either older experimental techniques or new technologies, or placing their photographs into spatial installations, or printing them onto various media, or digressing from photography entirely. While it is difficult to single out a distinct common thread among the diverse work, all artists are clearly exploring and expanding their language of photography.
The dullness of photographic perfection enabled by today’s technology is perhaps one reason for retro-nostalgia, a phenomenon that may help explain the rise in interest in old photographic methods. While the exhibition signals a return to archaic photographic techniques, it also shows work by artists introducing new photographic technologies and procedures, if not reaching beyond pure photography. In doing so, they seem to be proposing a reflection on its power, role, and definition; a reflection that speaks about it indirectly, instead of referring to photography itself. Superficially, these two are contradictory tendencies. However, what this diverse range of experimental approaches does reveal is, above all, a search for one’s own voice.
What is photography today, when a photography exhibition can display merely the artist’s signature? And does capturing one’s own name not have something in common with photography’s inherent tendency to preserve memory? By expanding photography’s limits, the artists speak primarily of its possibilities today. They explore its language in a modernist manner and apply postmodernist principles to adapt it to their stories. And it may be that, to tell their stories, they no longer need the camera.
The exhibition is open until 15 June 2016.
Every day: 14.00-18.00
Address: Park slovenske reformacije – Argentinski park, Ljubljana