Fotograf Magazine

Martin Kollar

Field Trip

As a photographer, Martin Kollar is exceptionally successful in the Central European context. Recently, he has been invited to take part in This Place project with a dozen of other renowned photographers to document what is now Israel and Palestine. In 2013, Kollar’s work created for the project was published by MACK, a respected London publisher; it also won the Oscar Barnack Award and the Prix Swiss Elysée of the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne shortly after that.

Kollar took his photographs in Israel from November 2009 to January 2011. He tried to show anxiety and fear and to express the future of the Israeli society. In his work, however, he systematically avoided the Israeli-Palestinian conflict dealt with by journalists. He captured mainly the ubiquitous tension and latent danger, often expressed through the images of military training camps and science centres.

Kollar’s photographs were first presented in Prague during the first launch of This Place joint project at the DOX Centre for Contemporary Art. Several solo exhibitions, including the one presenting nearly four dozen artworks in the Slovak National Gallery in Bratislava in 2015, followed. The exhibition in the Fotograf Gallery has been greatly reduced by the author. It uncovers the post-conceptual approaches, based on the good documentary tradition, Kollar has used in his photographs. While the DOX exhibition emphasised the visual quality of his photographs and the Slovak National Gallery strengthened the context of the images and the role of the presentation space, the Fotograf Gallery exhibition is based on time series and diptychs and confronts the images.

Tomáš Pospěch