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Nadia Issa: Adam

An exhibition of large format photographs- portraits about man. Each of images becomes a different scene or feature of “Adam”, and consequently, as an archetype - of every man.

Author, Exhibition Title: Nadia Issa: Adam
Venue: Jan Koniarek Gallery, Trnava, Synagogue Towers – Center of Contemporary Art, Halenárska 2, Trnava
Curator: Karel Míšek
Opening: 18.6.2019 (Tuesday) 6.00 p.m.
Exhibition Duration: 18.6. (Tuesday) – 28.07. (Sunday) 2019

Duration of the exhibition is extended to September 15, 2019.


Nude man, portrayed as the photographer perceives them, without any additional attributes. This gesture causes a difficult to define intimacy between the photographer and the photographed. These series depict men of all ages, occupying various positions, from diverse social groups. In front of the lens they become equal. There is nothing in these pictures what would define their identity, and yet they seem to be unique individuals- contemporary men. Photographs were taken with natural window light, using medium format Rolleiflex camera. They are full of concentration, calm and curiosity. Nothing here happens rapidly ...

Portrait photography is based on capturing the links between history and the expression of a person’s face. The human face is the subject of the authors’ interest, not only nowadays: it is a theme that goes throughout our civilization. A portrait has a rich tradition. Eminent personalities were portrayed in ancient times. The great development of this painting genre was recorded in the Renaissance, and another boom followed, especially at the beginning of the Baroque period. At that time, portraits were mostly painted and drawn.

The invention of photography provided a wide range of possibilities, which were allowed thanks to modern technology, creating a great space for artistic and documentary activities. Without photography, we cannot imagine press services nor the transmission of a wide range of information. Artistic creation is a unique area of photography.

Thanks to the fact that photography has become widely used and developed, portrait photography, which is not only a unique mean of artistic expression but also a mirror that stops the civilization flourishing and the changes associated with it, had gained in importance. A portrait is not an accidental shot, but an image composed by the author based on the analysis of the person being portrayed and, of course, an excellent knowledge of photography techniques.

Portrait photographs by Nadia Issa are a proof of the author’s diligent work. On large formats, through her talent, she combines a strong expression of the person’s face with her ability to observe. Her work with light, in contrast to deep black, gives the photographs an extraordinary power of expression. The unique style of the artist provides the portrait with strong tension and energy. The author’s project proves that new and interesting approaches can be found in this genre, which significantly enrich portrait photography. Through her portraits, Nadia Issa expresses her view of the world, and often a difficult theoretical undertaking is an opportunity for her to express her philosophy.

The presented series of photographs show the exceptional, continuous development of the author. In terms of content, composition and great form, Issa’s work occupies a significant place in this field. The frugality of means of expression gives the photographs timelessness and hidden power. Many photographs, thanks to their artistic expression, leave a very strong impression on the viewer. The exhibition, presented at Faculty of Art and Design at the Jan Evangelista Purkyně University in Ústí nad Labem and now at the Gallery Instytut 116 in Warsaw, is a convincing proof of the importance of long-term cooperation and mutual understanding of cultures.

Prof. Karel Míšek
Faculty of Art and Design at the Jan Evangelista Purkyně University


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Press release
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