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Bogdan Konopka - szara pamięć
9 X - 14 XI 2009
PL. Łódź 23.08.1993.
PL.Biłgoraj 25.05.2008.
PL. Szydłowiec 08.10.2008
PL. Częstochowa 30.04.2009
PL. Lesko 01.05.1998.
Grey memory

only the clamor
of such silence
only the uproar
of the barren land
the thick mass of no one
Jerzy Ficowski, What is
... The country of my birth is one vast burial ground. This land stretches into a limitless grave, soaked with blood and flesh of warriors, soldiers and innocent victims. The soil here hides an infinite, invisible, subterranean memorial of victims, built of human bones and ashes. The ashes of bodies, ambitions, ideas and faiths. People of nearly all European nations found their final resting place here, as well as some more exotic tribes. The woods still echo with the sound of executions and heavy, funeral clouds hang over the fields - the only ones to have witnessed all that happened, not ashamed of their helpless tears of despair. Many a thing happened here, too many for a human mind to comprehend or for words to bear. In the emptiness and silence which befell after the last of the Shoah faded away, I am wandering through the wilderness in search of forgotten cemeteries, which, as it turns out, out of all the traces of the existence of the Absent that can still be recognized, are the ones that lasted the longest.
      Because of the multitude of Jewish graves in Poland, dybbuks roam here freely. Some of them have been here for generations, centuries even, leaving their mark on the appearance of towns and cities, traditions or even food. At many graveyards, I was the only intruder to disturb the stillness of their unfinished wandering quest. Amongst the tombstones dried by soil and entwined in a brotherly tangle with roots and greedy, intact vegetation, they live off wild strawberries, raspberries, mushrooms - sometimes, they may find an apple-tree. There are many birds here, plenty of hares, lizards and vipers. The light, filtered through tangled branches and leaves, is particularly photogenic. One is very tempted to sit for a while in the shadow of the frozen aura of sorrow and oblivion, which still carries the sounds of the past; here, one may finally see - or at the very least sense - the presence of a dybbuk. Here, we can find everything that proper photography requires. Material, solid traces, frozen in the infinite existence, given away to be cared for by the elements; the absence is all the more painfully tangible there. I tried to capture this dybbuk kingdom, hoping that one of them would appear in front of my camera with a confession which would resonate in the meanders of grey memory...
Bogdan Konopka
Paryż 13.09.2009
PL. Krzepice 30.04.2009.
PL. Dukla 19.05.2008.
PL. Bobowa 22.10.2008.
PL. Bielsko Biała 3.11.2008.
PL. Przemyśl 21.05.2009.

Next exhibition

Andrzej Kwietniewski

27 XI - 18 XII 2009

Copyright ©2009 Galeria FF ŁDK, Bogdan Konopka