The 14th edition of the international photography festival KAUNAS PHOTO launched the exhibition „Fossils“ by the Australian artist Todd Johnson on the 27th of May. The outdoor display is located at the foot of Žaliakalnis hill where the famous funicular cable car operates. The exhibition continues until the 31st of October.
„Fossils“ is presented in the context of this year’s festival theme „Water“. This series is a result of a collaboration in between the artist and nature. The displayed photographs are prints from photographic slides, that were submerged in water for a prolonged period of time. Affected by moisture, minerals and contamination the slides displayed transformations in colour and texture. This direct link in between photography and water speaks of beauty and chaos found in nature.
Normally the captions of photographic works provide the details about the type of film or camera used, technical parameters like shutter speed, aperture, film speed or the type of lens.
Todd Johnson chooses the unconventional way of making marks on photographic material and provides us with the detailed description of his method. The duration for which the light sensitive surface is exposed to light determines the image. One hundredth or even a one thousandth of a second is enough to capture the moment photographically.
However the captions for “Fossils” series give us the information on exposure lasting as long as weeks, months and years, during which the soil, water and moisture slowly carve the image into a film. Time in photography is comparable to running water, sharing the beauty and effects of erosion. The cracked image surface resembles paintings and the materiality of the medium.
Todd Johnson is an Australian artist and educator who lectures in photography at Deakin University, MIBT and Australian Catholic University. His research interests include photographic authorship, indexicality and materialism in the digital age. Todd Johnson has exhibited his work nationally and internationally. He has published his work in numerous international journals and magazines such as „Sneaky Magazine“, „Art Ascent: International Art Journal“, „Blame Magazine“ and „Aint Bad Magazine“.
Todd Johnson’s „Fossils“ is a third KAUNAS PHOTO exhibition at the foot of Žaliakalnis hill. Italian photographer Paolo Fusco exhibited his series „Today is … birthday“ in 2016 and the American collaborative duo Hillerbrand and Magsamen showed their „Mandala“ work in 2015.
KAUNAS PHOTO is the longest- running annual photography festival in Lithuania and the Baltic States. It is organised by the NGO „Šviesos raštas“ since 2004. KAUNAS PHOTO is one of the most important annual art events in the country. KAUNAS PHOTO is a member of Festival Of Light organisation.
It is supported by Lithuanian Culture Council, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania, Kaunas City Council.
President Valdas Adamkus is the patron of the festival.