photo-objects: latent image on baryta paper & digital print of negative on plexiglass, 70 x 100 cm, 1/1
The procedural cycle of photographs is based on historical portraits from the 1930s, copied onto large-area negatives from plexiglas. The negatives in a direct – contact way create on a classic photographic paper – substrate, by natural light in the space the so-called surface latent image. The intensity and saturation of latent portraits is constantly changing with the intensity of light and the length of time of the presentation. The result and character of the latent process effect influences the possibility of re-tilting and closing of the large-area negatives in the form of an imaginative window. The patterns are created from negatives of the estate of a family relative – the lawyer Mr. Kováč, who stopped photographing after a fatal personal reversal. Inherited negatives present dream family times. Given the harsh truth, this is a story that does not seem to exist and has remained latently hidden. Jozef Sedlák moves this project even further, to a factual position of “evidence” from an archive in a form of personal artefacts from the estate, resulting in the temporal dimension and preciousness of preservation gaining more value and pertaining inevitability of existence within the layers of memory. Through the original photographs – scans, the author has created a notional book mosaic of this family and a metaphorical map of a confiscated house; a house that once was a place of warm family relationships, where people loved each other, where children had been born, where life had gone on peacefully. “Abandoned home that has changed into a house – construction, is aptly compared to a person by poet Jules Michelet: ‘The house is the same as the person, their form, and their most imminent effort; I might even say, its suffering.’ The symbolism of objects and houses in their rigidity have become an impulse for stories – of other people and one’s own, in empty places, out of fear of emptiness.”
He graduated from the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (1984) with a degree in artistic photography. Presently, he is a head of the Studio of Communication in the Medium of Photography at the Department of Art Communication at the Faculty of Mass Media Communication of the University of Ss. Cyril and Methodius in Trnava. He has exhibited his works individually or as a part of a collective in the Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary, Germany, Italy, England, Sweden, Finland, Greece, France, Poland, Russia, Japan, USA.
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