Zoltán Tombor_Trouvaille_2022_Einspach Fine Art & Photography.jpg
VIENNA CONTEMPORARY
9 - 11 September 2022

ZOLTÁN TOMBOR: TROUVAILLE

In Zoltán Tombor's new monumental 2022 photo series Trouvaille, airy, contourless female figures follow one another against a uniform white background in a milky-white fog. Their blurriness continues the world of the portrait gallery of Light Therapy (2021), but here nudes bend and stretch their tendons and muscle tones. The one hundred and twenty separate studio shots are assembled into one huge tableau. Due to the unified vertical format, the same model and the uniform, all-softening whiteness, it seems like a sequence, like Eadweard J. Muybridge's famous motion studies. But Tombor does not analyse a natural sequence of movements with a camera timer but sets his nude model among studio conditions. The slim, fragile female figure – in front of a blurry lens – loses its realism of detail, dissolving into an impressionistic haze like the nudes captured by early twentieth century pictorialist photography. But the white, ethereal figures of Trouvaille do not pose classically, but perform a range of different moods and movement phases. One dances gracefully, another stretches her numbed limbs, one holds a yoga pose, another bends to the ground in a casual movement, one poses like a professional ballerina, another like a participant in a totalitarian mass sporting event, one showing off her elegant violin-shaped back like Man Ray's famous surrealist model, the other standing with her bowed leg as awkwardly as Josephine Baker in a banana skirt in a variety show. Trouvaille's permanent model is graceful and chunky, classic yet playful at the same time. The basic character of Tombor's photography is the exposure and documentation of the thin covering membrane and surface tension (see his exhibition Surface Tension). In his Trouvaille series, he went further: he did not find the shells – sometimes torn – himself but created them with the blurry focus that the camera drew as a semi- transparent curtain in front of reality. We try to get close to it, but it won't let us. The image remains a mystery no matter how hard we force our eye muscles. Robert Capa, the Hungarian icon of war reportage photography, taught us that if your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough. Tombor deliberately steps back to preserve odalisques' quiet solitude and mysterious intimacy.

See you next time at 

Frieze Masters 2022 Einspach
Paris Photo 2022 Einspach

Einspach Fine Art & Photography supports the International presentation of Fortepan Masters

Fortepan Masters is a photographic album, which includes remarkable images from the collection of Fortepan, the most significant modern Hungarian online photographic archive with more than 150 000 images. Photographer Szabolcs Barakonyi with a keen eye has embarked on selecting 333 photographs that he regards as most outstanding from the collection. This year the Fortean Masters has been shortlisted in the Historical category at The Rencontres d’Arles photography festival. In its appearance – designed by Zalán Péter Salát –, Fortepan Masters strives for exceptional quality. Its most striking element is a medley of the hard cover and the soft card cover containing sheep fur. Its layers secrete family photos from the 20th century, including some selected from Fortepan’s unpublished images in the case of collectors’ copies. The typography of Fortepan Masters uses an unusually rampant mix of typefaces. The books recalls the 20th century with a historic typeface, Times New Roman and its twelve different variations. 

 

The amazing book of vernacular photography from the Fortepan archive is back from printers. One of the most astonishing photography books I have ever seen.”

ANDRÁS SZÁNTÓ

curator (New York)

 

The book is available via fortepanmasters.com, shipped internationally.