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Authors, exhibition title: M. Marenčin, J. Ondzik, THE THIRD ALWAYS COMING THE FIRST
Place: Kopplova vila GJK, Zelený kríček 3, Trnava
Curators: Viktor Frešo
Authors: Martin Marenčin, Jozef Ondzik
Opening: 3. november 2005
Duration: 4. November - 4. December 2005

Jan Koniarek Gallery in Trnava presents two series of documentary photographs by Martin Marencin and Jozef Ondzik. Essential part of these two points of view came into existence as a result of two grant programmes for documentary photographers, which enabled the artists to show their vision of current Slovak reality. The public are familiar with both the programmes and their significant contribution to Slovak visual art - to mention just some of them: projects of documentary photographs of Martin Kollár, Andrej Bán, Lucia Nimcová, Andrej Balco and Tomki Nemec. Both Martin Marencin and Jozef Ondzik were members of the civic association Slovak Documentary Photography (Slovenská dokumentárna fotografia) and helped to form the aims of the grants of which they later became awardees.


Martin Marencin: Z cyklu Slowly Slovakia, 2001-04

Since 2002 Jozef Ondzik (1964) has been working on Visual Report on our Country’s Situation for the Institute for Public Affairs, the subtitle of his work being From countryside into town. The theme of this research were the sharp contrasts between regions of Slovakia. This research resulted in black-and-white photographs, a personal discourse of the artist, published as a book and shown on exhibitions. The photographs show various territories of our country, glossing the situation of our society. Speaking of the world he lives in, the artist, emotionally engaged, displays pictures with irony, humour and sociological views.

In 2003 Martin Marencin (1956) (similarly to what Andrej Bán had been doing the previous year, having been awarded grant Photodocument.sk by Agency Vaculik Advertising) was putting together his statement on Slovakia. During this period he continued with his long-time ongoing project (which started in 2001) Slowly Slovakia. The outcome gives a sarcastic glimpse at the consumer society, with their paradoxes and their degradation of interpersonal relations, carelessness towards the countryside and human qualities. However, it is by no means a mere criticism of our society. To answer essential questions of human existence, the author uses vivid colours in large expressive photographs.

The fifth presentation of the joint exhibition in Slovakia shows a selection from Visual Report on our Country’s Situation by Jozef Ondzik and Slowly Slovakia 2001 – 2004 by Martin Marencin. After shows at the Východoslovenská galéria in Košice, Štátna galéria in Banská Bystrica, Považská galéria in Žilina and Nitrianska galéria in Nitra, the artists and their work will be presented at the Ján Koniarek Gallery in Trnava between November 4 – December 4, 2005. The exhibition is curated by young artist Viktor Frešo known as member of the Egoart group. The curator did not come to the opening, he even did not see these artworks at all, but had his opening speech through the mobile-phone. This act imposes questions about the role of art theorists, art historians, art critics and curators in connection with Slovak photography and also what is the contribution of a curator in the artwork in general or even what is the value of his/her speech.

Based on text by Jozef Ondzik

The exhibition was supported by Ministerstvo kultúry Slovenskej republiky


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