Wet collodion photography form the Łódź Film School

Collective exhibition:

Franciszek Ammer, Agata Berniak, Maciej Bujko, Dawid Ciesielski, Nina Hajdorowicz, Katarzyna Iwańska, Rafał Jóźwicki, Jakub Karwowski, Magdalena Kimak, Przemysław Konefał, Monika Kryszczyńska, Krzysztof Miller, Maciej Nowaczyk, Igor Oleś, Anna Orłowska, Tomasz Pastyrczyk, Joanna Szewczuk, Marek Szyryk, Bartłomiej Talaga

Slow photo group: Piotr Cielecki, Katarzyna Cegłowska, Tomasz Walczak, Kacper Bartczak, Anna Wiśniewska, Jan Wajszczuk, Magdalena Adamczewska, Natalia Masin

curator: Marek Szyryk

A wave is wet. That is why this archaic collodion method is also called wet.

It was devised and used in photography in 1851. It is a very sensitive and capricious process – each part of the carrier has to be covered with collodion by hand, sensitized with a silver nitrate, rapidly exposed to light, and developed while still wet. Collodion emulsion is poured onto various surfaces: black glass, metal plates or glass. At the end of the process, we fix and rinse the plates. After drying, we cover them additionally with varnish.

The technology requires exposing of a still wet collodion surface, which retains its sensitivity for several minutes, so one has to expose a photo to light during that time and quickly develop the still wet plate. In order to do so, a photographer needs to have an entire lab for s/he needs to prepare the material and perform the process on his own.

Wet collodion method is a largely unpredictable technique – each single plate is subject to individual processing and is the only, unique copy.

The presented works come from regular classes in the Polish National Film, Television and Theater School and our own work. A huge wave has hit the Łódź Film School. These ambrotypes are a result of contact with this magical, a bit alchemical, technique. Some imperfections left by the light-sensitive emulsion, stains, shaking hands or developer marks are, at the same time, a certificate of expression contained in these photos. The wave reminds me also of a song by a punk rock band – a testimony to uncompromising understanding of music and world, roughness, dirt and simplicity of music.

Marek Szyryk

9.05 / sunday, 16.00
Muzeum Kinematografii, pl. Zwycięstwa 1

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