Kotzmannová, Alena / Gas Station
plastic-coated photograph on canvas; 78 × 197 cm; limited edition 2/2
purchased 2018 with the support of the Czech Ministry of Culture
This photograph was taken at night, yet it shows a scene in which modern people normally live, work and exist. The banal yet at the same time quiet and almost meditative moments during which a driver fills a car with fuel bring a certain timelessness to the fore, suspending motion, not only stopping the engine but also halting mental and physical activity. However, behind this meditative moment there is a concealed and contrasting tension. The car is one of the symbols of today’s dynamically accelerating world and the fetishization of machinery that typified the entire 20th century. (Auto)mobility on the one hand offers freedom, yet it also fosters an addition to work, constant economic transfers and logistical motion… The night-time driver at the filling station embodies this pathological aspect of civilization, and explicitly expresses the disruption of natural biorhythms.