In 1979 I found a negative film in a street in Olomouc. I took it to a dark room and made blow­ups of all the shots. The exposure of each frame of the negative took the same time. The story was developed and fixed. The form of the document depicted its structure, frequency and multitudiousness, sharpness and fogginess, darkness and lightness, density and sparsity, reality and dreamworld. Thirtyone connected images, a strip of firm memory, materialized time. In 1996 I exhibited the story I had found at a group exhibition entitled Lost and Found in Divadlo hudby (Theatre of Music) in Olomouc. None really responded to it except for one of the visitors, Thomas Busch, who was shaking his head in disbelief, laughing for a long time and who finally said that it was „surreal.“ Seventeen long years passed. The story did not change. It is still the same, written down in the timeline of a negative film whose positive image is just a tool for the visually impaired. Readers have changed as well as the ways of reading. The space between images, before and after images is filled with new meaning and imagination. However, the space inside the images does not oppose changes. The story is fixed, simply present. Today the same as thirty four years ago. The question concerning the possibility of its transformation is not exact. We need to ask a different question: Is it a story of the portraying or a story of the portrayed? A story of a photograph, photographs or the photographed?

Vladimír Havlík

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