Just when we thought we knew all the incarnations of Kora and her creations, along came Jacek Poremba and his vast archive of photographs of the artist. Some of them had been published once in the press, but never before had they been put together and presented as a certain story. As a result of the meticulous curatorial work of Grzegorz Jarosz and Maciej Domarecki and the excellent cooperation with the outstanding photographer, a one-of-a-kind exhibition has been created. A selection of Kora’s photographs, under the telling title (EX)plosion, will be on show from 9 to 19 September at the AOKZ Gallery in Łódź
The choice of Łódź is not accidental, as it is here that the fates of both one of Poland’s best photographers, the artist who died five years ago, and the owners of the AOKZ Gallery intertwine. Jacek Poremba is a resident of Łódź by blood and bones, it is here that he spent his youth and discovered his artistic path, Kora used to record video clips in Łódź backyards, including Maanam’s image for the song “Kreon”, which was shot in the famous catacombs of Abramowski Park. Today, one of the park alleys bears her name. In turn, the AOKZ Gallery at 3 Włókiennicza Street is a new place on the cultural and artistic map of Łódź, which sets trends in the gallery market and provides space for creative dialogue between artists and the public. It is a meeting place for people who share a passion and love for art
Harmony of two personalities
The exhibition tells a peculiar story of fascination and boundless trust which Kora placed in Jacek Poremba. Known for her uncompromising, charismatic and fearsome attitude towards the producers of photo shoots, she found balance and understanding without words in her contact with the quiet and somewhat withdrawn photographer. – At the time, I communicated poorly verbally with the world; I was very shy. But unexpectedly my silence immediately found common ground with her talkativeness. She looked at me and we simply liked each other,” recalls Jacek Poremba. The result of this meeting are Kora’s fascinating photographs, which are expressive and intimate at the same time. They are not only an artistic record of the colourful personality of a total artist, but also an emanation of the photographer’s strength and artistry, his vision and consistent realisation of an idea
Jacek Poremba’s style is expressive and distinctive. His trademark are portraits that, like an open book, show a detailed map of the protagonist’s life. This is what the artist himself says about the creative process: “When I stand in front of someone with a camera, even if I don’t know them, I usually don’t need any words, it’s enough for me to hear their gaze to learn a lot about them. This look is often more authentic than words. Because when two people meet, a relationship is automatically born which is an exchange and a mutual influence – everything reflects and is reflected, like light. Jacek Poremba believes that the camera is the head, not the photographic equipment, and that the photograph and its accompanying energy are born in the head before the shutter is pressed
Although Jacek Poremba’s career took off and flourished in Warsaw, it was in Łódź where it all began – the first experiments, searches, contacts, new paths. The exhibition at the AOKZ gallery in Łódź takes on additional significance because Jacek Poremba, as a mature, formed artist, has not yet had an individual exhibition in his home town. And how can we not talk about magic here
Since the opening of our gallery, we have consistently followed the path we have chosen. We show art that arouses emotions, makes us think and discuss. We want to sow positive ferment, encourage people to participate in culture, which is why our exhibitions and curatorial choices are so diverse,’ says Maciej Domarecki, co-founder and co-owner of the AOKZ Gallery
Education is also an important part of our mission. We have a need to share our passion and knowledge. The AOKZ is a zone open to all forms of artistic dialogue with art,” adds Grzegorz Jarosz, co-founder and co-owner of the AOKZ Gallery
The creators of the (EX)plosion project have not yet dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s when it turns out that the photographs of Kora made available by Jacek Poremba are only a part of the archive. There are still many sessions with Kora waiting to be uncovered, and the original exhibition will perhaps have a continuation
The (EX)plosion exhibition will open on 9 September. On that day, lovers of fine art photography will be able to enjoy a unique guided tour led by the photographer and the owners of the Gallery. The exhibition will run until 19 September. More information about the AOKZ Art Gallery can be found at www.aokz.pl
Jacek Poremba – born in Łódź in 1966. In the profession since 1990, he started as a fashion photographer, gaining great acclaim and recognition. His current speciality is portraits, to which he has devoted most of his attention in recent years; he also enjoys documenting his travels. He has cooperated with the largest press titles, i.e. Viva, Twój Styl, Uroda, Pani, Gala, Cosmopolitan. He is the author of album cover sessions for such artists as Katarzyna Nosowska, Kayah/Bregovic, Lipnicka/Porter, Bartosiewicz, Kowalska, Jopek, Kora, Maria Peszek. Some of the most iconic photographs are those created as a result of a unique friendship with Kora – a creative meeting of two energies and sensibilities
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