Aleksandra Vajd

Ways of Thinking and Working with Photography

21.11.2019 / 6pm

Aleksandra Vajd has devoted her career to experimenting with the constituent elements of photographic language, its laws and structural variations. She raises the question how far it is possible to persist in a medium that was for so long connected with mimetic illusion and the semantic construction arising from it, which slowly became exhausted and increasingly strayed into the mannered stringing together of images that in a saturated iconosphere rarely have anything new or really meaningful to say. For this reason her explorations are directed towards borderline, interdisciplinary forms of visual expression, where photography connects with related practices and is no longer reliant on a two-dimensional surface. Among other things, she is particularly interested in placing the photographic product in space – a product which is no longer dependent on a pre-selected image from the mass of iconographic possibilities, but arises in line with the photographer’s original ideas from material produced with photographic resources and procedures. Thus Vajd confronts the viewer with a spatial structure whose constituent elements are photographic in origin, but visually and in terms of effect are sculptural, combined in accordance with the principles of interactive installations.

From 2005 to 2015, she predominantly worked in collaboration with the Czech photographer Hynek Alt.

Their work process was based on the collection of visual elements in the everyday environment, their escape from the original context and the search for new connections, analogies and shifts. In the permanent dialogue they investigated the issues of authorship, uniqueness, subjectivity, simulacrum, stereotype, social and sexual identity, appropriation and simulation. 

The lecture/talk will show and explain some examples of reduced photographic work with an emphasis on its materiality. The artist is creating minimalist groups formed by combining two or more exposed photograms, creating an almost embossed impression allowing us to think about the objecthood of the supposedly immaterial medium. We will see and try to understand the photograph as an object that tries to position an independent context of the medium outside the mimetic field.

Born in 1971 in Maribor, Slovenia. Lives and works in Prague, Czech Republic and Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Aleksandra studied photography at the Film and Television School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (FAMU) and at the State University of New York at New Paltz. In 2008, she was awarded the degree of associate professor at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Ljubljana, Slovenia. 

Aleksandra received a number of awards and grants, including a Fulbright Foundation scholarship in 2006. 

Since 2008 she heads the Department of Photography at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague. Her work is represented by Prague based gallery Lucie Drdova Gallery.

Aleksandra is a member of the editorial board of Fotograf Magazine, Prague.

View photo album on Flickr