Exhibition of Currently Most Renowned Czech Photographer Jan Saudek
I am talking here about the exhibition of Jan Saudek, famous Czech art photographer. His work as well as his personality is celebrated, adored, worshiped by some people and at the same time vilified, despised and cursed by others. There is nothing in between.
Why? Almost all of Saudek’s pictures involve nudity. And nudity is controversial for some. For Saudek and his fans, these are pictures about life, because nudity is part of everybody’s life. Sometimes funny, sometimes pathetic, sometimes a little rude, but that’s perhaps rather like the real thing.
People used as models for his nude photography are ordinary people, no models from magazines. Saudek is fascinated by the metamorphosis of human body over time, photographing children as well as women’s bodies – boyishly thin or voluptuously fat. It is the relationship between youth and old, beauty and ugliness, sincerity and falsehood, irony and cynicism that you can trace in his work.
His work is distinctive and original, not part of any genre or movement. And it is original, provocative adoration of manhood – to which anything human is not strange – that makes Saudek a unique character in contemporary photography.
Jan Saudek was born in 1935, in Prague. Many of his family died in concentration camp during World War II. He himself was held in a children’s concentration camp near Polish borders. This terrible experience as a child had a strong influence on him.
This exhibition, which includes 50 years of Saudek’s photo work, is unique by its range and the choice of works exhibited. It shows more than 150 pictures; either elephant size or published for the first time.
You can form your own attitude towards Jan Saudek after visiting his big retrospective exhibition at newly open Jan Saudek Gallery (this exhbition used to be on the Old Town Square, in the house called U Bileho jednorozce, in English The White Unicorn House). Open daily from 10 am to 8 pm.