Alnis Stakle – Night Landscape Photography –   FK Artist

Alnis Stakle – Night Landscape Photography – FK Artist

I always need that moment – an hour or one and a half, which is simply walking. This walking is more like a catalyst for the thinking process on many different issues including what I am doing, why I am feeling like this, why exactly these things seem interesting to me, but others not. Ending with very existential questions. I have been taking photographs for quite a long time – for some 20 years. I would say that there are two directions that I follow. One can be called traditional photography, which, for example, can be spotted in series Home Sweet Home with nighttime scenes. Or more documentary views from Riga or Daugavpils, which always remind of kind of a diaristic approach of the place, where I live. It is a meditative and to some degree a very simple approach. Daugavpils, of course, has left an impression of a place that currently gives rise to sentimental feelings, but once it was my place of residence. It was the first place, where I started to take photographs quite seriously and for the first time my works were noticed and appeared in exhibitions, magazines and beyond the borders of Latvia. Yes, and there was such series as LSD, which I started in 2000 and which lasted for a very long period of time. It was about Daugavpils, but also about me as a person, who loves moving around and looking at things. In this series it was important to me that it was magnificent enough as colour photography. Namely, that the series is pictorial enough and interesting to look at, but at the same time implying a social message. A kind of worried gaze. The series of documentary works, which are not reporting, is created as a result of long walks and thinking processes. Often the very process is more walking and looking than photographing. It surely is thinking about the surrounding environment and an attempt to take photographs of some interesting things, but those interesting things characterize me. The landscape that can be seen is, in fact, my inner landscape. “In those difficult years Lenin gave up everything that could keep him away from work On Sundays, too, Vladimir Ilyich often worked late at his office.” And there is the Kremlin with a star and a fighter… Although at the moment I am looking at it with a huge dose of irony, it has left some trace. There is some kind of a parallel world as, for example, Melancholic Road. This series was created on the basis of the images that were obtained from various viral videos on Russian sites. Quite naturally it matched the materials that I had found in some former oil base in Latgale. There were customs declaration forms from the 1990s, And those found sheets of paper turned into a book. So yes, for me these two worlds coexist in parallel – quite schizophrenic. But they describe my artistic interest in the traditional soothing strolls with a camera and in the practice of constructing something very specific out of existing materials. What gives satisfaction? Well, I can insist pretty sure – any photographer or visual artist gets visual enjoyment or enjoyment from looking. And photography gives it in several stages. The first stage is when you look at the things that you obtain with the help of the camera. One thing is that you look at the thing that you like. Another thing is that you see the image that you will get, which will technically differ from reality. I think, it is the enjoyment mechanism – he awareness that you will get something out of that what you are looking at. When I was showing my works in a portfolio review, it took me some time to understand what the reviewer, the director of a museum, said. “Yes, very beautiful, but at the same time, looking at all this could make me cry.” At that moment when he said it, I did not really understand it, but now I get it. You see the same road in every 5, 10, 20 years and nothing has changed. There is the same old house, the same crumbling fence and the same washing hanged out for drying. And then you understand that the places where quite many people live do not change despite the fact that the system has changed.

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