Sandra Požun & Maja Šivec

kustosinja / curator: Doroteja Kotnik

Fotografska razstava Kontrasti predstavlja umetniška dela Sandre Požun in Maje Šivec, ki ustvarjata na področju akta, a ga obravnavata na različne načine. Njune pripovedi golih teles so predstavljene v različnih kontrastih, saj sta si fotografinji v več pogledih nasprotni. Sandra Požun ustvarja scenografske fotografije, ki spodbujajo gledalca k razmišljanju in občutenju, medtem ko se Maja Šivec ukvarja predvsem s studijsko fotografijo, v kateri išče estetiko golega telesa s pridihom erotike.

Sandra Požun zase pravi, da je ženska, neizmerno zaljubljena v fotografijo, s katero se je začela ukvarjati iz ljubezni in ji je obenem tudi najboljša terapija. V svojem umetniškem ustvarjanju se je posvetila fotografiranju človeškega telesa, ki ji pomeni najlepšo kreacijo narave. Vendar ne želi razstavljati lepega telesa, h kateremu teži globalni trend. Na telesih jo privlačijo deformacije in nepravilnosti, kot so na primer brazgotine, celulit in sledi bolezni, torej človeško telo v svoji naravni, neolepšani in resnični veličini. S tem izraža svoja razmišljanja o današnji kanonizirani lepoti, s katero množični mediji bombardirajo našo družbo. Zato žensko telo upodablja kot interpretacijo vsakdana in se s tem dotika družbeno aktualnih tem, povezanih z ženskostjo. A naj vas to ne zavede, Sandra Požun ne fotografira le ženskega akta, prav tako upodablja moške, ki niso idealizirani. Fotografirane figure so oropane identitete, saj umetnica ne mara izrazitega portreta, v kolikor ne gre za klasičen portret. Z neidentificiranimi figurami ustvarja pripovedi, prežete z misterioznostjo, s poželenjem in s privlačnostjo, ki vplivajo na gledalčeva čustva. Zgodbe poudarja s krajino, v katero so umeščena telesa, ki spominjajo na gole otrple forme, torze ali antične kipe, ki jih je oskrunil zob časa. Za ozadja fotografij načrtno izbira posebna naravna okolja (park Turnišče in Šturmovci idr.), propadajoče dvorce in gradove (Borl, Dornava, Slivnica, Štatenberg, Turnišče) ali zapuščene industrijske objekte, s katerimi poudarja kontrast med golo kožo in grobim hladnim okoljem. Praviloma ustvarja črno-bele fotografije, na katerih s pomočjo svetlobe ustvarja močne svetlo-temne kontraste, ki vdahnejo fotografijam veliko mero dramatičnosti. Pričela pa je tudi izraziteje uporabljati barvno fotografijo, ki je enako nemirna kot njene črno-bele fotografije. Pri njeni barvni fotografiji dobimo občutek, kot da je rahlo kolorirana, saj intenzivnost barv ni močna. Najpogosteje z barvo poudarja fotografiran motiv in figuro. V zadnjih dveh letih je začela skozi eksperimentiranje zabrisovati linije telesa, s čimer poudarja srhljivost upodobljenih podob, ki se izgubljajo v kaotičnem svetu med življenjem in smrtjo.

Maja Šivec se je pričela ukvarjati s fotografijo v času študija. Za fotografijo akta jo je navdušil mentor in fotograf Bogo Čerin. Nanjo so vplivale fotografije Roberta Mapplethorpa, ki je z uporabo svetlobe poudaril monumentalno lepoto čistih form golega telesa, kar zasledimo tudi pri njenih fotografijah. Kljub temu da so jo prvotno zanimala popolna telesa in čista estetika form, se je z leti pričela oddaljevati od svojega vzornika in je začela iskati lepote golega telesa vsakdanjega človeka. Ne išče nepopolnosti, vendar izpostavlja individualnost teles, ki jih razgalja v prvinski obliki. Lepoto človeškega telesa predstavlja skozi idealizirano formo, ki jo poudarja z uporabo sijaja in studijske osvetlitve, ki potencirata organskost telesa. Ženskim aktom v črno-beli fotografiji, kjer so svetla gola telesa v kontrastu s črnim ozadjem, je v nadaljnjem raziskovanju kot nasprotje postavila barvne fotografije teh »lepih« golih teles. S tem je na fotografije dahnila neidentificiranim golim telesom občutek topline. A kaj kmalu je potrebovala nove izzive in se je osredotočila na tipične ženske teme. Začela je fotografirati gole nosečnice. Nastali akti niso bili le erotični, prav tako so nagovarjali gledalčeva občutenja o intimnosti nosečnosti. Estetika teles je s tem postala čisto drugačna. Nosečnice je predstavila kot telesno formo, kjer je s studijskimi lučmi osvetlila trebuh, s čimer poudarja novo življenje, ki prihaja. Nosečnicam je na nekaterih fotografijah dodala moško figuro, na kateri občutimo zaščitniški odnos moškega do bodoče mamice. Na drugih je poudarila materinstvo in odnos med materjo ter otrokom. Fotografije simbolizirajo ljubezen, družino in veselje ob prihodu dojenčka. S študijsko fotografijo je prav tako pričela raziskovati dvojice teles, in sicer moškega in ženske. Ustvarila je fotografije, v katerih občutimo umetničino zanimanje za ljubezen in intimnost fotografiranih partnerjev. S črnim ozadjem naglaša barvitost teles, kjer se skozi igro teles tudi poigrava z našo percepcijo. Rdeča nit umetniške fotografije Maje Šivec so ljudje in njihovo naravno telo, ki je prikazano neposredno, brez potrebnega zakrivanja ali sramu.


The photography exhibition entitled Contrasts showcases artwork by Sandra Požun and Maja Šivec, both of whom create nudes, albeit in very different ways. Their stories of naked bodies are represented in various contrasts, as the two photographers are each other’s opposites in many ways. Sandra Požun creates scenographic photographs that encourage the observer to think and feel, while Maja Šivec is primarily engaged in studio photography, in which she explores the aesthetics of the naked body with a touch of erotica.

Sandra Požun says she is a woman immensely in love with photography, which she started exploring out of love, and also finds it to be the best form of therapy. In her artistic production she is devoted to the photographic capture of the human body, which she considers nature’s finest creation. She does not strive to exhibit the globally trendy beautiful body, but is instead attracted to deformities and imperfections, such as scars, cellulite, and traces of disease; that is, the human body in its natural, unadorned, and true grandeur. This is the artist’s way of expressing her view on today’s canonized beauty, which the mass media bombard the general public with. Therefore, she depicts the female body as an interpretation of everyday life, thus touching on socially relevant topics related to womanhood. But do not let that misguide you; Sandra Požun photographs not only female nudes, but also non-idealized males. The photographed figures are stripped of identity, as the artist is not fond of expressive portraiture, unless she is working on a classic portrait. With her unidentified figures she creates narratives imbued with mystery, lust, and attraction, which affect the viewer’s emotions. She underlines the narratives with landscapes, which house the bodies that look like nude numb shapes, torsos, or ancient statues defiled by the ravages of time. For the backdrops of her photographs, she deliberately chooses special natural environments (Turnišče Park, Šturmovci, etc.), decaying mansions and castles (Borl, Dornava, Slivnica, Štatenberg, Turnišče) or abandoned industrial spaces, which emphasize the contrast between bare skin and a harsh and cold environment. As a rule, she makes black-and-white photographs in which she uses lighting to create powerful light and dark contrasts which give the photos a great deal of dramatic impact. She has also begun working with colour photography, which is no less dynamic than her black-and-white. Because of the low intensity of the colours, her colour photography gives the impression of being only slightly colourized. Colour is most often used to emphasize the photographed subject and figure. Over the past two years, the artist began experimenting with blurring the lines of the body, highlighting the eeriness of the depicted images, lost in the chaotic world between life and death.

Maja Šivec took up photography during her studies. Her mentor, photographer Bogo Čerin, was the one who sparked her interest in nude photography. Her work was influenced by the photographs of Robert Mapplethorpe, who, using light, emphasized the monumental beauty of pure shapes of the naked body, which is also evident in her photographs. Although initially interested in perfect bodies and the pure aesthetics of forms, over the years she began to distance herself from her role model and began searching for beauties in the naked bodies of everyday people. She does not seek out imperfections; rather she exposes the individuality of the bodies that she displays in their primal form. She presents the beauty of the human body through its idealized form, which she accentuates through the use of gloss and studio lighting, which intensify the organic nature of the body. In her further exploration, she counterpointed the black-and-white female nudes, where bright nude bodies are juxtaposed by a black backdrop, with colour photographs of these “beautiful” naked bodies. In doing so, she breathed a sense of warmth into these photographs of unidentified naked bodies. She soon craved new challenges and ended up focusing on typical women’s topics. She began to take photographs of naked pregnant women. The ensuing nudes were not only erotic, but they aroused the viewer’s feelings about the intimacy of pregnancy. The aesthetic of the bodies thus became completely different. The artist depicted the pregnant women as bodily shapes, illuminating the belly with studio lights and thus highlighting the new life to come. In some photographs, the pregnant women are complemented by a male form, which elicits a protective attitude of the man towards the expectant mother. Other photographs emphasize motherhood and the relationship between mother and child. The photos symbolize love, family, and joy at the arrival of a baby. Her photographic studies also began exploring pairs of bodies, a man and a woman. She created photographs in which we can feel the artist’s interest in the love and intimacy between the photographed partners. The black background accentuates the colourfulness of the bodies, and the dynamic of the bodies is used to play around with our perception. The common thread of the artistic photography of Maja Šivec is people and their natural body, which is displayed openly, without any need for concealment or shame.