Martin Kollar is a photographer and cinematographer whose work has been widely published and exhibited. Slovakia 001 is a photographic survey of his home county that avoids the unexceptional by seeking out oddities, and was prompted by his participation in a contest held by the Slovak Institute for Public Affairs. A series called Television Anchors, which came about through the cancellation of an assignment to photograph New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, exposed incongruous and revealing television news report backdrops to major crises that reveal more than their commentaries. Nothing Special, 2000, explored territories around the Warsaw Block, finding chaos and humour in partisan
clashes of cultures, where un-staged moments of tradition meet modernity to perplexing effect.
A project initiated by Fredereic Brenner to document Israel took Kollar to Tel Aviv, where he focussed on imagery relating to the state’s future rather than its past or present. In it he finds sites of preparation and prevention, particularly security and surveillance-related locations. Published without captions, the photographs go unexplained, further suggesting unintelligible secrets. A body of work on Tokyo’s Chiba prefecture was exhibited in Arles as part of the Marseille-Provence 2013 exhibition, published under the title Provisional Arrangement. Searching for states of impermanence the series attempts to map out a psychogeography of uncertainty and stasis.
Martin Kollar was born in 1971 in Zilina (Czechoslovakia, now Slovakia). He studied cinematography in the Film and Television faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava. In 2003 he joined Agence VU, publishing numerous photographs of everyday life from Slovakia in newspapers and magazines worldwide including Le Monde 2, Liberation, GEO and Courier International. He has received many awards including Les Pépinières Européennes pour Jeunes Artistes, the Annual Country Report, Institute for Public Affairs, FujiFilm Euro Press Photo Awards, Leica Oskar Barnack Award and Prix Élysée.