The starting point for the exhibition “Technology hates ambition” is an interview conducted by Piotr Zugaj with Lucjan Demidowski in 2020, which also became part of the publication accompanying the exhibition. The works of two artists presented at the exhibition reflect each other, sometimes the question of their authorship gets lost and distracted, what counts is the image. This approach to the Demidowski/Zugaj relationship creates a gap in the student-master relationship, which becomes a space of mutual inspiration.

(…) Lucjan Demidowski moves the game with perception to another dimension, which is photography. It is not enough for him to do a single act and disrupt the order of the place, making it unreal by means of the illusionists’ favourite prop, the mirror. Demidowski’s photographs become permanent images of illusion and the invisible – the mirrors appearing in them “look” at the opposite view, visible neither to him nor to the camera lens. In this way, the artist constructs visual treatises on the nature of the photographic image and its relationship to reality. Alongside mirrors, he also uses stones and varying angles of view. In some works, it is very easy to trace the interference, while others are so complex that we are inclined to see it, even though it was not used at all.

Piotr Zugaj, on the other hand, in a way looks behind the curtains of Demidowski’s works and makes an effort to recreate them from memory. He reflects on them and creates his own images, directly or indirectly inspired by his older colleague’s photographs. For Zugaj, the illusory space, the space of the mirror and its reflection, is an attempt to understand Demidowski’s method of working and imaging. However, it is much more than an unmasking of his technique – it is another variation on reality. The works of the two artists featured in the exhibition mirror each other, sometimes making the question of their authorship unclear or irrelevant, as it is the image that counts. Such an approach to the Demidowski-Zugaj relationship introduces a rift in the apprentice-master relationship, which becomes a space for mutual inspiration.

Paweł Bąkowski, curator

Curator: Paweł Bąkowski

The project is co-financed from the budget of the Lower Silesia Region Self-Government

Lucjan Demidowski (born 1946 in Krzeszów Górne) – photographer, one of the representatives of conceptualism in Polish photography, associated with the Lublin photographic community. He has been taking photos since 1960. Then, as a fourteen-year-old boy, he received a gift from his father – a Zorkij 2S camera. Demidowski began his adventure with photography in the Zamek Photo Club, operating in the 1960s and 1970s at the Lublin Castle. Already then, one can notice Demidowski’s passion for formal experiments, successful use of tone planes, and tendency to geometricize the composition of the frame.
His work was influenced by the reflections and works of two photographers and theoreticians: Zbigniew Dłubak and Jerzy Lewczyński (Lucjan Demidowski met both artists personally, and this acquaintance turned into friendship). Acquaintance with the circle of photographers and filmmakers gathered around the Film Form Workshop in Łódź, including Andrzej Różycki and Józef Robakowski, as well as contacts with the artistic community of the Remont Gallery, also became an important artistic experience.

Lucjan Demidowski is the author and co-author of many photographic exhibitions; individual and collective, in Poland and abroad. Winner of the Lublin Art Award, two-time scholarship holder of the Ministry of Culture and Art, author of many meetings, lectures and workshops devoted to photography.

Lucjan Demidowski’s photographs are in the collections of the Art Exhibitions Office in Lublin, Galeria Labirynt in Lublin, Galeria Wymiany in Łódź, and the Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts in Warsaw. The artist’s biography was published in Anthology of Polish Photography 1839–1989 (Jerzy Lewczyński).

Piotr Zugaj (born 1991 in Lublin) – artist and art historian. He lives and works in Poznań. Graduate of the Faculty of Photography at the University of Arts. Magdalena Abakanowicz in Poznań. Scholarship holder of the Minister of Science and Higher Education (2014) and scholarship holder of the Cyprus College of Art (2016). He showed his works as part of individual and collective exhibitions, among others. during the Incheon Asia Maritime Media Festival in South Korea, the Chiang Mai Photo Festival in Thailand, the Athens Photo Festival in Greece and the Riga Photography Biennial in Latvia.

02.12.2022, 6pm

03.12.2022, 1pm
author-curatorial walk

free entrance

12.01.2023, 6pm
curatorial walk

free entrance

17. 02.2023, godz. 18.00
curatorial walk

free entrance

Photo and video: Arek Wołek