Photography after Photography

 

A group exhibition with the participation of:

 

Alla Georgieva­ - Genadi Gatev - Ivan Bogdanov - Ivan Kiuranov - Yoana Angelova

Yoana Kaludova - Kaloyan Bogdanov - Liliana Karadjova - Lyudmila Magdalena

Peter Tzanev - Petko Durmana - Rosen Toshev - Rositza Getsova - Svlien Sefanov

 

Curated by: Genadi Gatev

 

Nowadays, it seems more and more difficult to define the essence of photography or to defy its nature. Since the XIX century, photography has maintained a visual order which is presumed to be universal and at the same time neutral.

 

The question “Is photography an art form?” has accompanied its entire history, until in the 1930s Walter Benjamin transforms the question in “Does photography change the nature of art?”

 

Modern day information technologies and the distribution of images have constructed a space that is no longer geographic, a space of shrinking time. This is a magically constructed reality which has been transformed into a global pictorial scenario. This total visualization not only dismissed the hegemony of a thousand-year-old culture, but also “forgot” the initial character of the image as an orientating postulate. This led to an amnesia in which life itself has become a function of images - the past is revealed to be unconvincing and the present is defined by the cliché normative of concepts, the linearity of history turns out to be fuzzy, between facts and fiction.

 

The technological environment has changed not only art itself, but also has transformed space, has transformed mentality, senses and perceptions. Reality has transformed itself into an illusion of reality in which the images support the illusion of participating in the happening. Participation in post-history, post-truth or …post-art!? This puts forward the question of rethinking these events and escaping the illusion of participation.

 

Would photography, that brought us to this condition, offer us an alternative modernity and a way out of the environment in which everything is possible, where there are no norms, criteria or rules?

 

The artists in this exhibition strive to answer this question by showing us a new interpretation of the image. This is an exhibition in which, through the means of media, the character of the idea of art itself is being reconsidered.

 

The works in this exhibition are not just photographic images. They contain the feeling of uncertainty, a state of compressed time and hypertrophied space. They are illusory, utopian and speculative, while at the same time carry a desire to break out with hallucination and rethink existence. The visual experience is outside the frame of a single truth, beyond the established chronology of history and beyond subjectivity.

 

Contemporary art using the medium of photography, urges us to constant transformations. Now, the photographic environment faces what is beyond itself: this which opens experimental ways for perceiving and reacting to otherness.

 

The works included in this exhibition show us that not everything has been said about photography yet, that it will be never possible to say everything about it. The one thing that we can be assured of, is that after photography comes …photography.

 

 

Genadi Gatev

Photo-painting portrait

Svilen Stefanov 1999/2019 Analog photography, digital photography, color printer, photo process, photo paper, aluminium, 21x29.7 cm