Bronek Kozka

Just back from seeing Bronek Kozka‘s show at the ACP: Memory, Myth and the 1/4 Acre Block. What struck me was not so much his attention to the first and third parts of the title, which make up the majority of the blurb about the show, but the mythological aspect of the works. Deliberately staging scenes, manufacturing photographs, is not a style that usually appeals to me, but I was closely drawn to Bronek’s images for their understated vision. The ‘held’ poses in combination with selective sharpening and formal composition had the overall effect of being both larger than life and somehow less. The room notes say “hyper-real”, but by ‘larger’ I mean simply metaphorical. Stylistically though there is a simplification going on, a nod towards illustration that to me felt superbly balanced.

Bronek Kozka, from the series 'Suburbia'

Here’s what Bronek said in response to the question “How much of your work is later edited in post production?” in an interview from 2009 in australian edge:

“I’m not really into lots of cutting and pasting, it’s more about tone, contrast and colour balance…like grading in the film & TV world. Tone/contrast is really important, localized contrast can give the impression of sharpness or (often in my case) over sharpness to areas…and playing mid tones and shadow can create an “illustrative” feel. My preference is to create the “look” with lighting, there is nothing wrong with doing it in post, but I’d rather spend as little time as possible editing images… I get a thumbing head ache if spend more than an hour at the computer.”

Even if the suburban or memory-related themes don’t particularly move you, I would recommend the show as a fine example of a beautifully executed vision.

Memory, Myth and the 1/4 Acre Block is showing until Saturday 8 October at the Australian Centre for Photography.

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Posted on September 3, 2011

2 Responses to “Bronek Kozka”

  1. What a great mini-review of Bronek’s work! It makes me see the images in a different way too (and I’ve seen them a lot as you can imagine), which all good reviews should do I think. Glad you enjoyed the exhibit.

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