Photography exhibition: “Our Landscapes”
Where do people feel safe?
Where do you set your boundaries and have you developed the ability to do so?
Where and what is family?
These questions enabled and created photographs from the exhibition titled “Our Landscapes” (Naše pokrajine). The exhibition lasted for four days, from the 17th to 20th of December.
On Tuesday, 17th of December 2019 there was an exhibition opening during the school’s main break. It was set in our school’s student theatre area which was set up to resemble an apartment. A visitor would walk in through the backstage door and saw panels with photographs creating the apartment rooms (bedroom, bathroom, etc.). In the bedroom, one would see a blue mattress lying on the floor, with a typewriter sitting on top of it, and there was a gramophone next to an old green couch which played a record from Nina Simone in the background. Such diverse objects and their minimalistic placing enhanced the feeling that members of the audience have just entered somebody’s home. This was done with the intention that the visitors would not feel the obligation to stare at any particular photographs but they would feel safe and relaxed, allowing them to look at and explore the photos and surroundings as they preferred.
The opening began with a poetry reading by two students, Erik Contreras and Magdalena Radovanović. They read love poems by Silva Brank and afterwards people were led to the backstage entrance so they could see and experience the exhibition on their own. Through the week, it was good to see so many people taking the time to experience the exhibition in this way.
The main event was on Friday evening. It followed the same idea as the opening but with one significant difference – There were two young actors (Zala Klinar and Jakob Adamič Šeme) representing a couple living in the apartment - a symbolic tribute to my parents.
The photographs are mostly portraits of 40 people and, like the space where the exhibition took place, they are divided by rooms. This division of space is a metaphor for personality traits. They are different for every individual and one’s upbringing, societal variables, and environment all have a significant influence. That is why I tried to emphasize the importance of origin and family, as well as the importance of what seems as a free choice of who we spend our time with. The way we feel about ourselves and the way we feel about our surroundings is something that can easily become neglected in today’s fast lifestyle (if not already in childhood), which can disfigure self-image, our levels of understanding, and can make the process of becoming emotionally and mentally stable difficult. Such thoughts can be terrifying no matter to which age group you belong. For now, being sensual, honest, tolerant, and observant are just some of the traits that I believe can help.
To sum up in a few words: I wanted to create a reminder that people are human beings.
Eva Brank, 3F
Photographer, writer, and organiser of the “Our Landscapes” exhibition