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Klavdij Sluban

Prix Leica 2004, Prix Niépce 2000 (principal distinción de fotografía en Francia) y Villa Médicis Hors-les Murs1998.
Klavdij Sluban lleva fotografiando adolescentes en prisión desde 1995. Compartiendo su pasión, organiza talleres de fotografía para jóvenes reclusos. Este compromiso, que comenzó en Francia (Fleury-Mérogis) con la participación de Henri Cartier-Bresson durante siete años, así como la participación ocasional de Marc Riboud y William Klein, continuó en los campos disciplinarios de Europa del Este, en la antigua Yugoslavia (Eslovenia, Serbia) y la antigua Unión Soviética (Ucrania, Georgia, Moldavia, Letonia, Rusia), luego en América Central entre las pandillas, maras. Desde 2015, fotografía a adolescentes encarcelados en Sudamérica, sobre todo en Brasil y Perú.
La obra de Klavdij Sluban se ha expuesto en importantes instituciones en los últimos años, como el Museo Nacional de Singapur, la Académie des Beaux-arts de l’Institut de París, el Museo de la Fotografía de Helsinki, el Museo de Bellas Artes de Guangzhou, el Museo Metropolitano de Fotografía de Tokio, Rencontres d’Arles, la Maison Européenne de la Photographie, el Museo de Arte Moderno de Ciudad de Guatemala y el Centre Pompidou/Beaubourg de París.
En 2013, el Museo Niépce dedicó una retrospectiva a su obra, After Darkness, 1992-2012.
Ha publicado numerosas obras: 7AM, con Tereza Kozinc, éd. IIKKI, 2023; Photo Poche, n°169, texto de Željko Kozinc, éd. Actes Sud, 2022; In Vivo, éd IIKKI, 2022; Entre Parenthèses, Photo Poche Société n°12, éd. Actes Sud, 2005; Transverses – 1992-2002, éd. Maison Européenne de la Photographie; Balkans Transit, texto de François Maspero, éd. du Seuil, 1997; East to East, European Publishers’ Award of Photography, 2009 publicado por seis editoriales europeas, entre ellas Peliti Associati, All’est dell’este, texto de Erri de Luca.


East to East, Erri de Luca

Klavdij Sluban comes from the segregated half of Europe, he is used to fences and to bars. He has even taught photography in prison. In this cycle he visits the East, an East whose people have been set free, like monks released from an enclosed order.
Like his fellow countrymen Klavdij Sluban, who spent his childhood in Livold, Slovenia, belonged to Yugoslavia, a country which ended up being torn apart in the final decade of the century.The photographer emerges from this region of all-consuming hatred. He tells about those in the East, to those who hardly knew the East existed revealing the shadows that emanate from there. Even the snow is dark, the light a faded white, exiled to the surface.

The photographer walks through the abandoned cities of the East. Where have all the inhabitants gone? Is anyone left hidden in the mist, is there some poor wretch on the run or with their back to the wall. The photographer presses on, in search of people, beyond Europe, advancing into Asia, Russia, Mongolia, China, on the Trans-Siberian Railway, but he finds no areas of dense population. Everywhere it is the geography that dominates, making human beings insignificant.

The journey of the photographer, rather than leading him to an East that is conceived as time past, opens a crack in the wall of time and takes him into the future. He visits the East as if he were a pilgrim consulting an oracle. From it he receives visions veiled in smoke and mist: the East is a defeated future, a time yet to come for humanity, stretched out and flexing.

And the future depicted here in photographic images is hard, hard to listen to. From the noisiest century of all, the greatest producer of mechanical clatter, we shall pass into a world of silence. The future will be accompanied by the silence of those who have been struck dumb. In these photographs, the use of black and white is like the fitting of a silencer to the barrel of a gun. The photographer is a marksman.

The photographer is homesick for the native snow of his childhood, the snow that used to blanket his corner of the world. But here it has become a white leprosy; it doesn’t coat the ground but eats away at it. Its silence is oppressive. To give subjects stillness a longer exposure is required. Stillness is the state of grace of a messianic moment, not the thrill of a divine visitation, but the conclusion of a race.