SAM 14 IS ONLINE

Slovak Art Magazine – SAM 14

Download  PDF (91 MB)
Download PDF (91 MB)

SAM 14 – focused on man

Cover page of SAM 14 has been taken by Peter Bagi the representative of manipulated photography and the first Slovakian who obtained the European title Master QEP. Besides professional photographers there are also great journalistic talents in Slovakia who combine pictures with words. One of them is Diana Mrazikova who described her positive approach to journalism with credo “Everywhere well but best in the world”. In addition Milan Maronek the president of photo club IRIS prepared a photo report from Seoul in Korea.

SAM 14 is focused on man. Almost all portfolios are more or less related to this topic. Our authors handle it obviously in a different manner and express themselves through variety of styles from fashion, journalism to old photographic techniques. Focused on man (closer Man and addiction) is the main motive of the Czech Open-air PHOTO festival. Our New wave of magazine SAM is being currently promoted on the website of the festival and will culminate in a video projection and presentation on 6th of June 2015 in Cesky Krumlov. We will compare our one with photographers who belong to Slovak New wave in the eighties. A hard nut to crack. Keep your fingers crossed!

Have a nice browsing…

Peter Bagi

Peter Bagi

 

Diana Mráziková

Diana Mráziková

Martin Mayer

Martin Mayer

Alex Kiňová

Alex Kiňová

Mura Murazu

Mura Murazu

Evla Vlašičová

Evla Vlašičová

Juraj Somolányi

Juraj Somolányi

Patrik Jandák

Patrik Jandák

Alexandra Demenkova

Alexandra Demenkova

Michal Wijata

Michal Wijata

Jamari Lior

Jamari Lior

Francesco Sambo

Francesco Sambo

Romain Jacquet-Lagreze

Romain Jacquet-Lagreze

Valda Bailey

Valda Bailey

Milan Marônek

Milan Marônek

The Open-air PHOTO festival is a flagship

Press Release, 5. 1. 2015

The Open-air PHOTO festival is a flagship on the sea of world photographic events

The Open-air PHOTO festival, a part of which was almost 3000 visitors, organises in the second year a range of partial projects, such as international meeting of photo clubs, competition of photogenic ideas ART ROOM, world competition Photo Award. The festival also presents contemporary Slovak talents of the New wave or welcomes an exclusive festival guest Robert Vano.

The festival offers both classic, which means exhibitions, lectures, workshops and expositions of photo equipment, and mainly active photography. This is missing in other photographic events and this is how the Open-air PHOTO festival differs from other project in both in Europe and in the world. The festival takes place in one of the most photogenic towns, Český Krumlov, listed in UNESCO. As the town is a co-organizer of the festival, visitors can get to especially attractive interiors and exteriors. Many photo stages in the festival theme 2015 – Man and addiction – as well as professional background and a wide range of photographic genres from street photo to nude will be prepared. There is a chance to participate and create for professional and amateurs, but also for people, who use a camera or mobile phone only for records of family celebrations or holidays and would like to achieve more.

Picturia
Where lies the uniqueness of the festival?

A concept of the festival, which is unparalleled in the world, meets requirements of both trends of experience hobby tourism and demands of professional photographers, as confirmed in words of Martina Ptáčková, the director of the festival: Most of the festivals are photogenic. People take pictures of music bands, actors, light installations, but it is always a kind of snapshot, souvenir from an event. Our festival, as one and the only, is focused on people, who like taking photos. Thus the programme complies with demands of photographers, which means to have good light, professional background, peace and time to take photos, and quality content of photography. No matter if a photographer professional or amateur, we offer a story in form of experience, which can be captured in professional conditions, thus learning new things, to pick some tricks from more experienced colleagues, or only just enrich their portfolio with beautiful pictures or genres, which are not common to be met.

The second year will introduce new projects, photo locations, and personalities

The festival tries to present the most attractive and most photogenic locations of Český Krumlov to visitors. It can be architectonic masterpieces; bur also secludes places, releasing photographic imagination. Besides well proved photo locations from last year, there will be new places such as Graphite quarry, Synagogue, or a rock at the Ploučnice River.

SUPŠ sv.Anežky - Jan Mahr

SUPŠ sv.Anežky – Jan Mahr

In addition to broadening visitors´ horizons in field of Český Krumlov architecture, the organizers also try to present new personalities to them. As an exclusive guest, Robert Vano is coming. More artists, who will be somehow involved in festival events, will be e.g, Tereza z DavleGarick AvanesianDorota Kycia (PL), Aleksandr Kharvat (UK), Ondřej NeffKatarína SmikováAsen ŠopovMilan BýčekJaroslav Svoboda or artist Vladimír Merta.
The projects, which are a part of the festival programme, are in process now. In January, there is closing date for competitions of secondary schools of art for photogenic ideas ART ROOM¸ Another competition PHOTO Award is under patronage of world organizations FIAP, IAAP, PSA, and ČFFU. The organizers of the festival closely cooperate with photo clubs, and therefore even this year the international Meeting of photo clubs is will take place. Currently, several Czech and Slovak photo clubs has been registered and the organizers gladly welcome more those interested from both Czech Republic and abroad. Symbolically, by occasion of Velvet Revolution 25th Anniversary, a project new wave was opened, with aim to introduce young Slovak talents in cooperation with the independent media SAM. The artistic quality and European contribution of the festival and partial projects were appreciated by the International Visegrad Fund, from which the festival received international grant.

The only festival, where you really enjoy taking photos

The Open-air PHOTO festival is a specific festival focused of photography, which combines experience format with interactive education. Meetings of photo clubs, lectures, workshops, expositions of technological news, discussions with the experts, or photo advisory office will take place for the whole Friday; tens of locations and photo stages on historic background of the town for the weekend. During three days, professionals, fans, and people moving in front of and behind camera will meet in Český Krumlov. At one place people meet, exchange experience, and expand their knowledge. Český Krumlov will liven up with photography again on 5 – 7.6.2015.

SUPŠ sv.Anežky - Jan Mahr

SUPŠ sv.Anežky – Jan Mahr

Contact for the media:
Soňa Holotová, sona@foto-festival.cz, +420 725 373 155

Co-organizer of the festival is Český Krumlov
The festival and partial projects are supported by:
International Visegrad FundCzech Federation of Photographic ArtUnion of Slovak PhotographersFédération Internationale de l’Art PhotographiquePhotographic Society of AmericaInternational Association of Art Photographers

Programme and product partners:
Ośrodek Kultury i Sztuki we Wrocławiu (PL), Ciróka Bábszínház (HU), IRIS (SK), AKF (SK), SUPŠ Sv. Anežky ČeskéMuseum Fotoateliér SeidelEIZOAdes4studio, Carl ZeissNONAC CVAPROOneFiveFUJIFILMFotoKrumlovAFOPPICTOARTFOTOSFÉRACirkus trochu jinakCzech BeautyKonfrontace

Media partners:
FotoVideoDigiNeffePhoto.skmagazín D., Slovak Art MagazinePhotoArtFotoAparat.cz

………

1.year of the Open –air PHOTO festival in numbers
17 locations / 54 photo stages / 18 photo genres / 98 photo models / 3000 visitors
120 lectures / 50 practical workshops / 36 partners / 30 personalities / 21 exhibitions
Watch the spot Open –air PHOTO festival 2013.
Here you can see presentation
More information at www.foto-festival.cz

SAM 13 IS ONLINE

Download  PDF (99 MB)
Download PDF (99 MB)

After a longer creative break we have completed the thirteenth issue of Slovak Art Magazine. After half a year we are introducing new authors along well-known names. This time we talked with Jakub Klimo professional advertising fashion and staged photographer about his beginnings and carrier. What is perhaps interesting and completely unexpected that magazine also includes thirteen female photographers and this number is consistent with the issue itself. In the series “Invisible photographers” we publishe a portrait of the famous Czech photographer Sara Saudkova in collaboration with Robert Vano Gallery and Kat Benzová wrote for us and instructions how to become a desirable rock photographer.

The announced cooperation with the Czech Open-air photo festival took a concrete form in presenting slovak New Wave and two photographers are presented with their portfolios on the festival website every two weeks. The organizers fulfilled the necessary conditions and has received approval for Visegrad grant. We congratulate them and are looking forward for the next cooperation.

We wish you a nice browsing through our magazine which is created with you and for you.

Jakub Klimo

Jakub Klimo

Sara Saudek

Sára Saudková

Natália Evelyn Benčičová

Natália Evelyn Benčičová

Peter Dobiš

Peter Dobiš

Katarína Grajcaríková

Katarína Grajcaríková

Silvia Janeček

Silvia Janeček

Kata Sedlak

Kata Sedlak

Andrea Ehrenreich

Andrea Ehrenreich

Ondrej Medved

Ondrej Medveď

Peter W. Haas

Peter W. Haas

Mirka Wolfová

Mirka Wolfová

Adam Kováč

Adam Kováč

Daria Khoroshavina

Daria Khoroshavina

Wiebke Haas

Wiebke Hass

Emanuelle Choussy

Emmanuelle Choussy

Sarah Allegra

Sarah Allegra

Jan Škop

Jan Škop

Gabriele Viertel

Gabriele Viertel

Manfred Voss

Manfred Voss

Katarína Benzová

Katarína Benzová

THE MOMENTS

Katarína Bezáková – Victor Breiner – Boris Bunčák – Peter Dobiš – Natália Hlavičková – Soňa Chovančíková – Lena Jakubčáková – Matúš Plecho – Kata Sedlák – Ján Viazanička

We invite you to the exhibition of new names in contemporary documentary photography.

Okamihy - The moments

Curators: Ivana Pástorová, Lucia Benická
Special cooperation: Matúš Zajac
Graphic design: Dávid Hutira

The exhibition will last until 31st January, 2015.

Exhibition is made possible thanks to financial support of the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak republic.

JANA KVALTÍNOVÁ

“At weddings I love the radiation of love and tenderness.” Robert Vano Gallery

Graduated civil engineer Jana Kvaltínová found her inner fulfillment in more romantic field than her field of study is. Her profession and passion together is wedding photography. She loves wedding entertainment but she takes her work with absolute seriousness, responsibility and perfectionism. Janka`s aim is not only to capture the moment but mainly that inexplicable feature which two people brings to the altar.

It is a little unusual that civil engineer became a wedding photographer…

I got inspired by my sister who was devoted to photography and she helped me a lot in the beginnings. My photography began with the birth of my daughter and initially I just wanted to take a nice photo of baby. But it went a little faster. I did not expect I will ever take pictures of people and weddings. The first object I shot was my future sister in law. She is very pretty and photogenic woman so we started training together.

© Jana Kvaltínová

Do you communicate with the wedding guests? Are you invisible or do you try to manage things?

I think I’m more invisible but of course if it is necessary I have no problem to communicate or to express my ideas. I’m the type who loves weddings since childhood and I am having fun along with the guests. When they dance I dance with them. I like to talk with their friends and family.

How couples planning a wedding can find you?

They can find me mainly through recommendations of their friends, family or acquaintances. Personally I have never put any advertisement. My ad is my job.

© Jana Kvaltínová

Many couples are waiting for wedding photos for several months due to demanding post processing. To what extent do you edit your photos?

I’m a perfectionist and I cannot pass a raw image to someone who trusts me. Today everybody has thousands quickly taken images at home. Wedding is a special occasion and later along with the memories really only pictures remain. Therefore I focus a lot to process them all and it takes me a month or two. When they see couple of photos processed at the beginning they rather wait because they know it is worth it.

Do you recognize the competition? At what level do you think the wedding photography in Slovakia is?

We have a very nice production but there are photographers who lower the level whether for price or quality. I do not understand how someone can deliver the photo to the client the next day without any adjustment. I am always surprised that there are people who are even willing to pay.

© Jana Kvaltínová

Is photo shooting besides a hobby also a commercial matter for you?

I like showing people that they are beautiful. I want to make them happy and I enjoy when the picture gives them something. Places, light and props, everything I use is linked with romance and joy.

© Jana Kvaltínová

Interview by Romana Juhásová / Robert Vano Gallery

Month of photography 2014

Central European House of photography brings to Bratislava a great photographic festival in November.

Dramaturgy in the 24th year of the Month of Photography stands on four pillars. The first pillar consists of exhibitions that thematise photography and theatre. The group of exhibitions includes one that is exceptional, Theatrical World 1839–1939, and also the unique original prints by Rudolf Koppitz, an Austrian author of the early 20th century. A renewed interest in inscenation can be observed in the retrospective work by Milota Havránková who inspired the Slovak New Wave. Month of photography presents a detailed reconstruction of the work of this group at the House of Arts / Kunsthalle.

Milota Havránková

Milota Havránková

The second topic of the Month of Photography is based on the 25th anniversary of the fall of communism in 1989. Five years ago we exhibited photographs that authentically captured the way of life in countries at the time of “real socialism”. This time we have prepared a series of exhibitions that tell how photography, and also culture, was misused in the era of totalitarian regimes (not only communist but also fascist). The title Propaganda and Power already suggests how photography was dealt with, not only by dictators such as Klement Gottwald, but also Jozef Tiso and Enver Hodža. The exhibition “Colors of the Republic” documents propaganda in early colour photographs from the German Democratic Republic. István Bielik reminds us of the falsehood of Russian propaganda, in the news from Maidan square in Kiev in January.

István Bielik

István Bielik

As always, an essential part of the Month of Photography are exhibitions of other Slovak photographers; from history and also from the present: Kornél Divald, Ján Galanda, Juraj LiptákPavol Breier (Prague), Silvia Saparová (Warsaw), Pavel Maria Smejkal (Vienna), etc.

The highlights of Central European and world photography include the Sony World Photography Award exhibition, which gathers together the best of current journalistic photography; and of course, the work of Gabriele Basilico, an exceptional Italian photographer of major cities of the world.

Gabriele Basilico

Gabriele Basilico

Month of photography includes also others exhibition out of Bratislava city, several photographic workshops, portfolio review and many accompanying photographic events.

RENATA VOGL

“I think the historical techniques have to be liked.”

Renata Vogl started with photography in 2009 and as of today she has had several exhibitions and was awarded on several international competitions. She uses wet collodion process – ferrotype to transfer female nude and landscape themes on metal sheets. She has fallen for one of the oldest photographic techniques despite its considerable difficulty, occasional headaches, brown fingers and several smaller fires.

Could you please introduce us to your art technique?

Wet collodion process is one of the oldest photographic techniques. The process is called „wet“ because the sensitive layer of collodion is poured on the plate that has to be wet. Only one original of the photography can be created via this process. I use ferrotype technique which is done on the aluminum plate but I do not deal with ambrotype where the glass is used. However, the procedure is similar. The first step includes cleaning and polishing the plate to remove the grease and dirt. Then collodion is applied and is poured on the entire surface by dangling in minimum inversion angles. Afterwards, in the darkroom, plate is placed into sensitized silver nitrate solution, where its stays for several minutes so a new sensitive layer is created. Then the plate has to be added to a specially designed cartridge film, which is put into the camera and then exposed. This should be set in advance, since exposure varies in time from five seconds to several minutes.

© Renata Vogl

Through the history, this technique was used by shooting still life, which is static or in portraits while models were fixed in a certain way, for example, their head was supported so they were able to sit still for two minutes. Picture is then developed in the darkroom by pouring the developer on the sheet. If the result does not correspond to my initial idea, the image can be easily washed off with a cloth or sponge and plate reused. If the image dries, it is not possible to wash it off. The last step includes fixing and varnishing. Metal sheet is heated up by a flame and then a paint lavender oil and juniper resin is applied. This is a very nice step, because everything is lovely lavender scented. Even some people who have particularly developed their olfactory cells can recognize the smell even later, when they smell to the finished picture. Varnish is dried again and you have to be careful due to the fact that it is flammable. Several times it happened that I had to put out the fire with everything what was at hand and I had to throw down and started to jump on almost finished ferrotype so I extinguished the flames – for my colleagues, it was sometimes very funny to watch. Of course, that in this way, I destroyed ferrotype, so even at the last final step there is a possibility it can go wrong. But there is no need to give up and thus you can work on your patience. But otherwise it is a nice step, which completes the whole process during an original and unique picture is created.

Is it expensive?

It’s obviously more costly, chemicals are not cheap and the most expensive solution is nitrate. But there are various online stores where you can purchase preferably available packages.

Does it happen that the photograph is not well developed and it does not work at all?

Very often. When I firstly heard about this process I thought, that is very complex and has many pitfalls. Everything is, however, about the feeling and practice. The more ambrotypes or ferrotypes man does the more he knows what and how, at what temperature, for how long, from where to pour or how to hold the plate. The procedure can be found also on the internet, but one will discover all these “nifty nuances„ after it goes wrong for twenty times and I try it again. Patience is essential.

© Renata Vogl

Why amongst all historical techniques did you choose ferrotype, which is particularly challenging?

With ferrotype I met by chance at the private workshop of photographer Rasťo Čambál, who was at the time very excited. As a beginner it seemed to me very complicated and difficult and I did not understand it. Once again I met ferrotype during my internship at Vladimír Židlický so I began to work more with it and I have become quite thrilled. I think a man, who has any visual perception is charmed very easily with collodion. I think the historical techniques have to be liked. Pictorial form is unique and magical. But it is important not to have any barrier of working with chemicals, as they are flammable and for example nitrate is dangerous, it must not to get into the eyes as this may damage them. You must be really cautious. Interesting and common character of all collodionists is brown fingers. Nitrate, after a few minutes, turns brown and you cannot wash it from your hands. It is typical that brown coloration is gone just after a few weeks. For ordinary people, it might look very strange. In the summer, when I work in shorts or a skirt it is not an exception that my legs are also brown.

What interesting things, except brown fingers, did happen to you at work?

There were days when I failed and had to repeat the process for several times. When I left the workroom I was surprised by the amount of fresh air. There are various vapors, there is ethanol and ether so mild headache from lack of oxygen have occurred several times.

Does photographer need to be also a chemist?

I would not certainly identify myself as a chemist but if someone works with chemicals he should know how to handle them and certainly be aware of how to store them properly and keep them in order.

© Renata Vogl

What do you think, how do your pictures that combine originality of form and content impress the viewer?

Responses are different, depending on who is viewing them. I was recently on the event in Banská Bystrica called “Days of originality”, where I exhibited my ferrotypes and it was quite interesting to see people’s reactions. I’ve never been so immediately confronted with a general audience. The exhibition was held in the shopping center, where you meet different people, from those who are not interested in photography to the professional artists. It has been seen that the “mere mortal“ barely looked at ferrotypes but visitors with some relationship to the arts were thrilled that they could see results of such technique. Many viewers will not understand them at all, others are keen. So it is okay in this way.

© Renata Vogl

More photos at www.artofphotography.eu

Interview by Romana Juhásová / Robert Vano Gallery

FOLLOWING THE CROSS

You are cordially invited to the opening of exhibition FOLLOWING THE CROSS.

Photographers: Andrej BÁN ǀ Pavol BREIER ǀ Michal FULIER ǀ Alan HYŽA ǀ Andrej LOJAN ǀ Laco MAĎAR ǀ Boris NÉMETH ǀ Jozef ONDZIK ǀ Jozef SEDLÁK ǀ Jindřich ŠTREIT ǀ Matúš ZAJAC

Opening will be held on Thursday on 2nd October 2014 at 4pm in gallery of Town Hall of City of Levoča, Square of Master Paul No. 2.

Baner

Thematic exhibition of contemporary documentary photography from production of Dom fotografie, interprets pilgrimages, Christian festivals and events, missions, and daily rituals following „cross“.
Curators:Ivana Pastorová, Lucia Benická
Special cooperation:Jozef Sedlák

Exhibition invitation (PDF)

Exhibition is open: 2.10.2014 – 16.11.2014, Monday – Sunday, 9am- 5pm..
Town Hall of City of Levoča, Square of Master Paul No. 2

www.snm.sk ǀ www.domfoto.sk ǀ www.gus.sk

Matúš Zajac – OUT

The second book of social documentarist Matúš Zajac called OUT will make you meditate.
- Four years of photographing – nine essays – seven awards. -

MIMO

He is there where are no others are and sees what others don`t see and don`t perceive. I appreciate Matúš as a man, I appreciate his approach to life and I really like his work.

- Jindřich Štreit. -


Selected works used in book OUT.

© Matúš Zajac - Out

© Matúš Zajac - Out

© Matúš Zajac - Out

© Matúš Zajac - Out

© Matúš Zajac - Out

© Matúš Zajac - Out

ANDREJ PALACKO

© Andrej PalackoPhotographer Andrej Palacko has been devoted to reportage and artistic documentary photography for 30 years. During his professional photographic career took thousands of pictures from cultural, artistic and political life of many countries in the world. He worked as a professional photographer not only in Slovakia, but also in Germany. Recently, he is being more interested in Cuba. His reportage and artistic perception of the world which can be seen on his images, is based mainly on the inner sensitivity, in terms of detail and recognizing the uniqueness of the particular moment. Andrej Palacko is not a man of sloth; his work is an expression of feeling for the visual perception of the world and man in it. He has that gift to mediate his perception to others mainly due to genes inherited by his parents. When the gift meets diligence, taste and need of sharing work with others it can results in a great thing. Andrej is opened to new challenges and specific needs of the media, agencies or individual wishes. He has hundreds of published reports, photographs, and images previously unpublished in his archive. He has captured many personalities from the cultural, artistic, sporting and political life (Fidel Castro, Joe Cocker, Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney and others).

What were your beginnings in photography like?

I`ve started with photography because of my parents. Mainly thanks to my father, who participated as an advisor in production of the military movies and I often went with him to see how these motions are done. Thus, he directed me to pictures making. It was in the house of pioneers (now the Presidential Palace) where I firstly learned how to make pictures.

Did you study photography?

I graduated high school. School, high or the university, gives you only theoretical knowledge, but the life will make you a photographer.

What do you still enjoy in this field?

I have been already in for thirty years. I still like to capture historic moments that will never come back and which will serve to the future generations for decades to make them aware who we were and what life did we live here. What bothers me is bad social situation of people, especially of young generation. I’m trying to point out this problem, that the world does not have the right direction.
I’m shooting everything, but I am particularly interested in backstage theater and opera, street and its atmosphere. I always try to seek for beautiful things and nice personalities in the country I visit. I am trying to emphasize good things. And it`s the exact opposite in Slovakia. It’s my home country and therefore I try to point out problems.

Until recently you have been using analog camera. Why?

Last year I was in Cuba for the sixth time and for the first time I took DSLR. I bought Nikon D4. I have been shooting for over 25 years mainly with Nikons. In last years mainly with Nikon F3 and I have a lot of accessories. Why do I shoot on film? Film materials last and can be archived from 100 to 200 years. Last time I took pictures in Cuba with digital camera and then I stored them on my HDD. In the last year four HDDs just crashed and if I had not had several photos archived the historical materials would have been permanently lost. This time is so synthetic. Materials that are placed on Google, Facebook, etc. are not sufficiently safe. There can be some conflict and radiation will erase everything. More and more photographers are coming back to analogoue.

© Andrej Palacko

Which celebrity you took pictures of is the most interesting one? The most likeable?

From Slovakian ones, certainly it was Peter Dvorsky. I was his home photographer. I can say that Dvorsky are gorgeous, wonderful and nice people. I actually took pictures of him everywhere, in the National Theatre, in opening of his club in Bratislava where I exhibited about 120 photos in the foyer. People after concert were walking by and all photos were taken. Then they came to Peter Dvorsky and to me and asked for our signature. I have beautiful images of Eugen Suchoň (Slovak classic music composer). Now is the 15th anniversary of the death of Eugene Suchoň and I must say I am disappointed with the approach of the Ministry of Culture. I have decided that I will not provide any pictures of our celebrity to Ministry of Culture.
From foreign ones, it was mostly Les McCann – jazz pianist, really nice person. Another one is Cras Mambri, who was in the sixties the world figure in Opera. I photographed her with Peter and Miroslav Dvorsky in Vienna. I met her when I was shooting the world`s greatest opera scene Aida. There were 1200 performers, elephants, camels and giraffes. Cras Mambri was very nice. At each meeting we hugged.

How it was with your departure to Germany?

I left two months before the revolution. Of course, my beginnings were in the kitchen where I was washing dishes. I went to language school year and in the evening I was working in the Italian restaurant. I learned to cook many interesting dishes there. I also tried to work at the bar. It was the school of life. Today’s young people are missing this. The lack of experiences.
Bratislava is totally plundered and chain stores destroyed its tradition. Tradition of cafeterias, wine bars and historic city that were here from Maria Theresa is totally destroyed. Bratislava is dead. Young should focus on traditions and return to nature. I prefer to go with my family to the countryside then to live in Bratislava. Bratislava has become a cesspool. If I compare it with Cuba there are no terrorists, criminals or mafia. Therefore, I am saying that it is an island of the planet. Of course there are problems, especially poverty, but the people have wealthy spirit there. Cuba belongs to the Cubans and Slovaks have nothing.

Let`s talk about Germany. What is the difference in work comparing to Slovakia?

The work is correct there, interpersonal relationships are correct, people are tolerant and especially the Germans are very industrious.

© Andrej Palacko

Why do you shoot in B&W? Do you develop them by your own?

All B & W photos I have developed at home. It was a bit difficult and not always easy. Vintage photo has its grain, its atmosphere. Today’s photography is very synthetic. Today, you can make a nice picture from the ugly one and skinny babe from the fat girl. This is not photography anymore.

Do you edit your pictures?

No, I have even never cut my pictures. The compositions on my photos are the same as on negatives. I also like to shoot details. My favorite lenses are 20 and 180mm. 20 mm lens for documentary and 180 mm for concerts and other details. By using 20 mm lens you have to go very close as I did when I was taking pictures of my dead friend Hugo Chavez.

What about the person photographed, does he/she accept you?

Mostly yes. In some cases no, but just in a few. I was shooting Fidel Castro on the tribune where not anyone has an access. It was a month before he was hospitalized, so I have got historical images. I was right behind Fidel Castro. Journalists are mostly downstairs but I was up.
I have one story with Gerard Depardieu. It was during a military parade. Depardieu came to tribune in a tracksuit. I had my lenses on earth together with my cigarettes. He said, “capitalism, Marlboro”, and I said, “Ich bin kein kapitalist, du bist kapitalist, du … Kohiba”. Kohiba is more expensive brand than Marlboro. And then he asked for money, so I threw him one peso. He is a big fan of Fidel Castro.

Recently you have received an award for a short documentary movie…

I prepared a documentary about the legend of world box Teofilo Stevenson. I was photographing and making a movie directly at his home. This document received an award at 30th International Documentary Film Festival in Milan. I did it on 3rd of June and couple days after Teofilo passed away. No one has such images. For instance Teofilo is dancing on some of them.

© Andrej Palacko

You shoot challenging projects, how do you finance them?

I have invested lot of money for shooting in Cuba. Now I plan to go to Venezuela, to document the construction of power plants. In addition, I will capture life in Venezuela and then I will make a huge exhibition in Caracas. I also plan to document the Dominican Republic.

In the past you took pictures of the gypsies’ community in Slovakia. Can you compare it somehow?

I have one such project now. I will go with a TV crew to do a documentary.25 years ago I worked as a photojournalist in Moro-revue. Once I went on a business trip to Humenne. Along the way I saw a gypsy settlement – Podskalka. Nice and beautiful. So I photographed and documented it. A colleague was closed in the car, he was afraid. I got quite close to them. After one month I returned to the village and brought 100 photos with me. All of them I gave away. Some of them they liked and some they destroyed. I would like to re-visit these villages. I would buy 5-6 cameras and I’ll teach the kids to take pictures. Then I will show photos from 25 years ago and their parents will find people in the photos. I want to awaken people to know the Gypsies, their culture, crafts and their soul.

© Andrej Palacko

Do you follow other photographers?

I have to admit that I have never checked other photographers and I have never criticized anyone. I did not have time for it. However, I have many good friends, photographers. But everyone has his job and nobody is arguing with anybody.

Do you train young generation?

If there was an interest from colleges, I would do lectures. I have a lot of experience that I would like to give to youth, not only about photography but also about life.

Did you shoot picture of your life or are you still waiting on it?

I want to photograph Fidel Castro with Mick Jagger together. My dream is to do an exhibition in London where I will present my idea to organize a concert of Rolling Stones in Cuba. It would be a concert of the century.

© Andrej Palacko

© Andrej Palacko

Foreign countries are interested in the Open-air PHOTO festival

Press Release, 21. 7. 2014

Foreign countries are interested in the Open-air PHOTO festival

More artistic spirit, participation of Visegrád countries, the main theme Man and Addiction, a contest of schools with artistic branches of study.

Our forthcoming year confirms a clear conception, resulting from the first year. Interest from abroad confirms our vision. I can confirm that we hear from photography fans, who have learned about the festival and the experts from neighbouring countries, as well as Belgium, Spain, and Great Britain, who would like to exhibit in the festival. Of course we are delighted that foreign photo clubs have found interest“ says Martina Ptáčková, producer of the festival, and continues: “Currently we are negotiating with Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia, who are all in keen negotiation. Even for this reason we strive to get the Visegrád grant.

The main theme of the second year

The first year was focused on Mankind. Next year will not differ, yet the main, associating theme, offering discussion from various social-scientific and artistic points of view, will be Man and Addiction, subtitled „What forms and shapes may addiction have and how photography can express it. Although photography comes into focus, also other artistic genres from theatre, clothes design, to stage design will be included. And all these branches in this theme will be seen in the public space in Český Krumlov. Last year the festival occupied the castle, cluster, monastery gardens, City theatre, Museum Fotoateliér Seidel, narrow streets and nooks of the historic centre, and school of arts.

Martin Grobař

ART ROOM 2015 Competition

Premises of the St.Agnes of Bohemia Secondary School of Art and Design became a strong location in terms of the theme and programme. Combination of photography with processes and results of artistic production is the main idea for opening the contest ART ROOMS 2015.
The competition is open for students of secondary schools and colleges with artistic branches of study from the Czech Republic and Visegrad countries. The ART ROOM 2015 enables them to express themselves to the festival theme, and, at the same time, provides space for presenting their work in the streets of the town. The festival experts and general public will have the opportunity to see and photograph the best installations of young artists and present it in other countries. “We want to inspire people to create, innovate , introduce young talent, cultivate and educate visitors” says Martina Ptáčková.

The jury

As previously mentioned , the main theme of the competition of schools and of the festival is the same, Man and Addiction. Character of the competition assumes team work interconnecting more branches in a given school (e.g. stage, graphic, and industrial design, architecture, etc.) The task is to create photographical scene, which will creatively express the theme of the competition and will be transportable to different environments, Original photo scenes will be assessed and selected by the jury, with Ondřej Neff in head¸ Other members of the jury are: photographer Tereza z Davle, film architect Milan Býček, artist Vladimír Merta, cameraman Asen Šopov, stage designer Jaroslav Svoboda and a representative of professional supervisors from the given country. Winning installations will become a part of the programme, thus compared with different environments. A travelling exhibition will take place over the Czech Republic and partner countries. Guarantor of the competition is St.Agnes of Bohemia Secondary School in the Czech Republic and Academy of Creative Photography in Slovakia.

Open air

What is the Open-air PHOTO festival?

The Open-air PHOTO festival is a special experience form of a professional festival. It is unique mainly by its interactivity. The weekend full of active photography within a carefully prepared programme with Český Krumlov providing the historic background. In our educational programme we provide lectures, workshops, expositions of technological news, discussions with experts or photo advisory centre take place for the whole Friday.
The event, which is unparalleled in the world of photography, gained favourable acceptance among participating experts, performers, partners, the media, and visitors, as well as the town itself. In two days, the town listed in UNESCO World Heritage becomes a place for encounter of professionals, fans, and people moving in front of and behind the camera. It is a great place to gather experience, new contacts, and to improve knowledge. The general public with no interest in the art form itself will find the things of their own taste. Accompanying programmes will take place in the centre of the town for the whole day. Interesting music bands, dance, and photogenic performances will be seen in the evening on the main stage. The whole rich programme will be topped with the night after party. Český Krumlov will liven up with photography again next year, in June 2015.

Picturia_5

Contact for the media:

Martina Ptáčková, martina.ptackova@innovate.cz,

+ 420 777 931 506