Wednesday, May 05, 2004

"Another Slovakia" - Indianapolis Artsgarden - May 5, 2004 - 4 stars

Perfectly pure and masterful photography by Martin Kollar. This small collection of 16-inch-by-20-inch Type C prints are the discerning footprints of everyday life in a changing Slovakia where old and new ways have been merging. Born in Zilina, Slovakia, Kollar captures an intimacy of expression and action that reflects the state of the country beyond strict documentation. The contrast is unglamorously portrayed, but not without intrigue and keen perception. Overcast skies secure the good light and set the stage for viewers to examine the streets along with the expressions and activities of inhabitants, whether that be a fox kill or simply getting one's hands in the dirt. Kollar's compositional aptitude only enhances the appeal and inviting quality of his work. Kollar's work is currently at the Kathleen Ewing Gallery in Washington D.C., and is touring the U.S. thanks to the Embassy of the Slovak Republic - a fine endorsement of how this work captures the culture. This is the best visual treat the Artsgarden has presented, thanks, in part, to the Czech and Slovak Society of Central Indiana. Through May 7 2004. -Mary Lee Pappas

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