The Great War Reflected in Contemporary Photography

27 April – 17 June 2016
Galeria Kameralna, Słupsk


The Red Poppy Fields exhibition is the premiere of the international project dedicated to the contemporary view on the World War I which is nowadays perceived as one of the most dramatic events in Europe’s recent history.

Artists: Hassan Abdelghani (HR), Anikó Bodor (HU), András Bozsó (HU), Lara Ciarabellini (IT), diSTRUKTURA (SR) & Barbi Marković (AT/SR), Peter Hebeisen (CH), Radenko Milak (BiH) & Roman Uranjek (SI), Jonathan Olley (UK), Borut Peterlin (SI), Darije Petković (HR), Martin Piaček (SK), Bonnell Robinson (US), Károly Sándor Áron (HU), Pavel Maria Smejkal (SK), Antal Tarjáni (HU), Vladimír Židlický (CZ).

Curators: Miha Colner & Dejan Sluga (Ljubljana)

Associated curators: Michaela Bosakova (Bratislava), Katarzyna Majak (Warsaw), Gabriella Uhl (Budimpest)

The Red Poppy Fields project reflects on turbulent European history and causal relationship between ideology and economy, between politics and war. Through exhibitions and discursive events it examines the causes and consequences for/of the World War I and its broader social, political, economic and cultural implications. Focusing particularly on the photography and moving image the curators and artists present different views of these historical events and draw parallels between the past and the present. The project brings together partners from Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia, thus the states that were predominantly involved in the war on the side of Austrian-Hungary empire. However, the participants of the project address these phenomena from the broader all-European perspective.

The project also focuses on some key elements of the role of photography in the early 20th century, when aerial photography was established and photojournalism began to develop, and now when in the digital age the questions of censorship, surveillance and propaganda are topical again. By juxtaposing contemporary and historic photography the project deals with the status of photographic medium in the both periods, one hundred years ago and nowadays as well as its role with preserving the memory and addressing historical discourses. The exceptionally diverse approaches of contemporary artists and photographers who in their work deal with the perception and representation of these past events testify on that.

After the premiere in Ljubljana the touring group exhibition Red Poppy Fields which is part of the wider regional project will be displayed in some cities across Central Europe (Bratislava, Budapest, Prague, Slupsk, Vienna). In the opening days the exhibition will be accompanied by international symposium which will host curators, artists and other experts in the field.

The project is supported by International Višegrad Fund and local funders such as Ministry of Culture of Republic of Slovenia and City Council of Ljubljana, and it is implemented in collaboration with renowned regional partners.