la camera di valentina

In Bed With Valentina n°12: Sue Polschikova ENG

It’s been a tough year, staying in bed was almost unbearable. Almost, but not in this bed, here’s always fun. Today we’re in the good company of Sue Polschikova and her conceptual photos took during quarantine.

How long have you been making photos?

I filmed this series of auto-portraits during the lockdown of summer 2020. Many call these times and moments that surround us, very dark times. Time isn’t the easiest concept, yet it allows the artist to concentrate and truly be himself, as all of his temptations fly away. On top of that, the lockdown has allowed to rethink many thoughts and take a deep look into yourself, teaching yourself and taking action.

Your work enchanted me because of the “naturalness” (both as simplicity and mix with natural elements) of the geometry. What did you bring to this kind of composition?

In my series, I tried to create a new “body mask”, connecting the human body with the objects of the surrounding natural and animal world. I wanted to explore, through this connection, their complementarity and mutual influence. To ask myself a question, “Where is the borderline between harmony in interaction and the pathological influence of one on the other? What grows from what? Who determines whom?” In my photographs, the combination of the physical and the natural gives a certain third dimension – something completely new, the “Other”, appears.
And by taking a good look at him, we can find the answers to these questions.

Are lights and colours significant in the making?

This is natural daylight. I was shooting at my balcony.

Is there a meaningful bond between bodies and nature?

In the history of European culture, there are two existent point of views on the human body, the “Soma” – the body without any clear boundaries between the external and internal and, the “Corpus” – social and culturally fixed, legally limited body. A modern person is able to overcome the boundaries of the biological body, creating his own “body mask” (makeup, tatto, clothes, surgery, etc) and if we change our ‘original appearance’, do we lose touch with nature? I don’t know.

Is the nudity of the body a way to erase the border between body and the elements?

Yes, it’s a way of finding out what the connection is between.

I saw there are elements that are recurred, such as mushrooms, or tubers. Do they have a special meaning?

No, I took a lot of shots, but not all of them will be in the final book. There will be no repeats. I was looking for the right image.

Why do you choose some details of the body and not a full portrait?

In these shots, the body is not meant to be just a body as we normally perceive it in our daily lives, in this series the body is just  a part of something bigger, it is one of the elements.

The poses are curled up as some elements: sometimes seem they’re blossoming together, sometimes they repulse each other, but the result is always a photo rich with vibes. What do you prefer: the body following down underneath the soil or the roots emerging to the skin?

I prefer them both, equally and even more. As I told before, I wanted to know where is the borderline between harmony in interaction.

What was the most bizzare composition to make?

There was no bizzare composition, but the hardest part was not getting caught by the neighbours as I was naked on the balcony.

What’s about the future of this series?

This project was published in a few magazines nominated in and won in several contests and now I want to keep filming, complete it and publish a book. 

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