Schleifmühlgasse 18 - 1040 Vienna 
+43-1-9207778 -



Marko Zink combines stylistic elements of photography and cinematography in his series swimmers. The motives are photographies in a classical sense, though through the photographic fixation of the moment, they are detached from time and brought to the present moment by light exposure. Nevertheless, the observer can feel and see that they do not want to become still-lifes, but rather "stills", single photographic shots of procedural pictures, as they are known in the kinesis of the analogue film art. In the Academy Awards-prized movie drama "American Beauty" (1991, Sam Mendes) a short film is being featured in the film itself, the short movie being shot by the young, main protagonist: For a minute the audience is allowed to observe the dancing, floating figures of a plastic bag in the wind – one of the most sensitive and touching scenes of that movie. The magic of that short sequence is immediate and demonstrates how unpretentious and objective beauty can be achieved. The same kind of reduction of staging to its essentials, gives the photographies of Marko Zink their impressive aesthetics. At first glance they are appealing, beautiful, mysterious. The narrative level of these photographies - the stories, which they potentially salvage or suggest - only seeks for a response afterwards. If the story ignites more on this or that object, or if it reveals itself as a political, general, individual or even tragical, or apocalyptical direction, lies more in the mind than in the eye of the beholder. The eye is long satisfied at this moment and fully saturated with the event of this perception, which swings between morphological irritation and cultural dèjà-vu. One may dive into the weightless spheres with Marko Zink, which the swimmers photographies attribute to the element of water. The tech-romantic Pipilotti Rist invites to congenial deep dives into a colourful aquamarine poetry in her famous video "Sip My Ocean" (1999). In countless cinematic works, such as "Le grand bleu" (Luc Besson, 1988) the noisy, edgy and prosaic world of the humans is more and more abandoned and shifted to a silent, soft, drunken sphere of the underwater world. Here, in the promise of a salty but untouched paradise, which can only be fully experienced by death ("...and half sinking himself" is the way Goethe words it in his ballade "The Fisherman"), a dual archetype is shown, in which the death-drive and the spark of prenatal evolution touches: the sea as the most spacious of all graves, but also as a cosmic, primeval soup and amnion. Although humans presence in the element water is limited to a short duration, it has been stylized as an essential act of purification. In the Austrian movie "Breath" (2011, Karl Markovics) the main protagonist, who is harried by his life, can significantly only gasp for relief under water, while he is diving into a swimming pool... We do not get wet when we look at Marko Zink's photographies, but something is happening to us. We are getting engrossed. For the veil, which is being put between us and a not too sharp concreteness, story or statement, by the aura of the water, is basically the same gaze-fabric, which got pulled over the camera's lens by one of the earliest experimental movie makers. Film-historically speaking, it mimics the same characteristic style of the early impressionists' paintings. Also, the swimmers photographies seek a poetry of abstraction from reality, not only thanks to the impressionistic orientation with which Marko Zink uses the highly resolving conciseness of lines and conjures the diffusion of colour-spaces, and settles it underneath abstract genesis. In his work series, Zink delivers us onto the already fading water track of silhouettes and history. In Marko Zink's Aquarium of the Art we are seduced and succumb to the tease of the formal and narrative unveiling, or just to enjoyably float along in the eerily-beautiful game of waves, and through this get pulled into the maelstrom of photographies, rather than into their interpretation.

Go to top