This, the second solo exhibition by a Czech artist at the FOG Gallery, introduces a typical representative of the middle generation of artists, a group whose work is not limited to a single medium. For Jiří Thýn, expansion beyond photography to video or installations is in character, as are interventions in the photographic object itself in the form of collages, digital manipulations or cut-outs. The author’s approach to photography derives from its technical possibilities. For example, he examines the medium in relation to light and time. In the last decade, Thýn has created several series inspired by the sculptures of avant-garde artists Otto Guttfreund, Katarzyna Kobro, Alina Szapocznikow and Hana Wichterlová. In particular, sculptures by the latter served as a source of inspiration for Thýn’s project Silence, Torso, the Present (2021). The author uses his own means of expression to interpret significant qualities of Wichterlová’s sculptures – simplification to their essential shapes, emphasis on their volume and, at the same time, the presence of dynamics via the distribution of mass in their composition. Wichterlová’s approach to sculpture is actually similar to Thýn’s understanding of the meaning of photography as an independent art form. They both seek artistic inspiration in the potential of each medium itself, avoiding description of the surrounding visual world.
The project exhibited at the FOG Gallery includes photographs of works by Hana Wichterlová, large-format black-and-white photographs with multiplied images and post-paintings, cut-out photograms on baryta paper, a plasterboard object replicating the outlines of Wichterlová’s sculptures in a composition with an unframed colour photograph depicting a particular sculpture as a multiple exposure from different angles, and a light box. Besides interpreting the impression of another artwork, these works in various media are also materializations of the author’s gestures. Expanding to different types of art and analysing the nature of photography as an art in close connection to its technical features, Jiří Thýn is a typical representative of his generation.
Jiří Thýn (b. 1977) graduated in photography from the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague. He was a member of the art group Ládví, which focused on artistic interventions in the public spaces of the Prague housing estate of the same name. He was a finalist for the Jindřich Chalupecký Award in 2011 and 2012. He is also active as a teacher.