03 Feb, 2022
«Jove’s Palace examines the relationship between the day-to-day and the fortuitous nature of the Cold War. The uranium extracted from Mailuu-Suu, Kyrgyzstan, was reportedly utilized for the creation of the first atomic bomb for the Soviet nuclear program. Its inaugural manifestation recalls Homer’s Iliad ‘two urns’ in Jove’s palace containing good and evil gifts; a duality equally contingent to atomic energy as to Pandora’s box. The Soviet Union is not singled out as the villain, rather exemplifying its imperial manifestations and exploitative institutional mechanisms that exist as a ubiquitous pattern that remain widespread in our contemporary world."
Alexander Komenda’s (b. 1992) work aims to reveal the multi-faceted nature of everyday life: to form a dialogue in a given community with care, tenderness and humility, uncovering layers encapsulated in still images. The complex interweaving relationship between community and environment is a recurring motif in his works. Contemporary documentary photography strategies involve placing oneself’s practice somewhere between fact and fiction, whilst retaining classic candid approaches. Exploring themes such as psychology, marginalisation, externality, colonisation and youth; all culminating in observational and performative documentary narratives. The key is engaging dialectically with subjects - dignifying their presence and incorporating their input to shape their stories; maximizing their participation in the work. This approach is equally if not more important off camera, to engage whole-heartedly and help establish a dignified sense of rapport. Much of his interest lies in topical issues, largely geopolitically rooted, intersecting with historical, mythological and philosophical themes; and how they are manifested in the quotidian.