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House of Art
THU–SUN 10.00–18.00

Kotzmannová, Alena / Gas Station

1999

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.

KOTZMANNOVÁ ALENA

Alena Kotzmannová (*1974, Prague) Photographer. From 1988 to 1992 she studied at Václav Hollar’s art school in Prague, and in 1992─1998 she continued her studies at the Prague Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design (in Adéla Matasová’s conceptual and intermedia studio and Pavel Štecha’s photography studio). In 2009 she was awarded a doctorate in art education from the Faculty of Education at Charles University, Prague. From 1997 to 2012 she took part in eight study stays in the Czech Republic and abroad, including the Schiele Art Centre in Český Krumlov, the Norwich School of Art and Design or the Centro de la Imagen in Mexico City. In 2005 and 2009 she was shortlisted for the Jindřich Chalupecký Prize. She has exhibited individually since 1998, and she has participated in group exhibitions since 1994. Besides photographs, Kotzmannová’s portfolio also includes videos and installations. As well as exploring everyday themes, she carries out formal experiments with the medium of photography – by integrating photography and video, enlarging photographs to fit on outsize canvases which are then mounted on frames, or applying surface layers of shiny plastic sheeting. Alena Kotzmannová’s photographs acquired by the gallery represent important examples of conceptual art which steps beyond the boundaries of the photographic medium – a typical tendency during the 1980s and 90s.
plastic-coated photograph on canvas; 83 × 157 cm; limited edition 1/1; purchased 2018 with the support of the Czech Ministry of Culture
1999

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