The exhibition “The Poetics of Politics – The Bucharest School of Photography”, curated by the Belgian art critic/ curator Sam Steverlynck, is as an exhibition diptych that simultaneously takes place at Harlan Levey Projects in Brussels (June 10 – July 15, 2023) and Art Encounters in Timișoara (Romania) within the framework of Timișoara 2023, European Capital of Culture.
The exhibition unites works of an emerging generation of Rumanian photographers (Michele Bressan, b 1980; Dani Ghercā, b 1988; and Nicu Ilfoveanu, b 1975) who all graduated at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bucharest, where most of them are still teaching. Having grown up in the aftermath of the Romanian revolution of 1989 and first-hand experienced the sudden transition from communism to capitalism and its long-lasting consequences on a social, political, economical, and urbanistic level, what unites their practice is a cautious approach towards the use of imagery for various narratives and a meta-reflexive way of dealing with the medium photography. Rather adhering a conceptual approach than a documentary one, they reflect on a period of economic, social, and technological transition while examining the notion of the image in all its forms. Experimenting with different presentation modes, switching between analogue and digital, projected image and moving image, while sometimes also incorporating found footage and text, they want to overcome the limitations of the still image, while stretching its possibilities. Though they do not position themselves as outspoken political, their way of looking at society clearly bears a political dimension which is expressed by means of a visual language that is at times experimental, aesthetic and poetical.
Project co-financed by the Romanian Cultural Institute and the Administration of the National Cultural Fund.