Ena rola filma short conversation with Klemen Ilovar
Klemen Ilovar is a Slovenian photographer, currently studying visual communications at Academy of fine arts and design in Ljubljana. With many realised projects and released publications he is one of the most recognisable photographers of the upcoming generation ‘89.
In an interesting conversation we focused at his newest, eternally on-going project, simply titled Ilovar: a tumblr blog with everyday photos, taken with small analogue pocket camera.
Aljaž: What was the reason for starting this project?
Klemen: It was annoying for me, that at the time I wasn’t producing any new work. All other projects were a long term ones, so I needed something relaxing for “in between”.
Aljaž: So you wanted to start photographing every day… to establish again the creative habit.
Klemen: It was more about the ritual of taking photos. Since I was visiting High school for photography and design, I was taught to take photos by the rules, some sort of standards. For that mater the photo itself was needed to be sharp, clean, had to had a clear composition… etc. I was working on clean, graphic photos, but this begun to undermine me. If I was to continue photographing that way, at the end I would literally get results very close to nothing. I really needed something new, a cheap kind of photography process. Nowadays I would define myself as a photographer that is after the things that are happening in my life.
Aljaž: In this project you were also interested in vernacular photography. Meaning that you tried to chase down the pure aesthetics of everyday photographic mistakes. Your choice of the first photo on the blog seemed very interesting for me… Can you tell me more about this?
Klemen: Whole process applies to the “return to the roots”. The first image I chose was a wall, a remainder of clean photography, that I did before. If you observe my blog from last to the newest post, you can literally see how taught, clean photography is dismounting. I started photographing with big SLR, than I bought little pocket camera. That was a huge change for me and my work.
Aljaž: Why are you presenting your “metamorphosis” on the Internet? Why didn’t you just stick your prints on your walls? What are the reactions of others?
Klemen: It might be better for me and the project if photos weren’t published on the internet. I admit it was a mistake. I purposely moved away from clean photography I was doing before, because of all commendations. But here again reactions are positive, and I am under influence of comments. I don’t see that as a good thing, because project would be more personal if it wasn’t publicly published. I am planning to exhibit this project together with photos of my friends on a huge wall someday.
Aljaž: What do you think about an inflation of trendy blogs, with one photo in one post? Just for people to like it…
Klemen: It’s bothering me in a way. I will create a new blog, hidden away from the public. Personal projects like mine are often over-emphasised. On the other hand it’s still your work so you have to be careful of what you are publishing, because if you publish something, people will see it, and you will be judged for it and that is the biggest catch.
Aljaž: What about the references for your photography. How do you see that? Your blog is full of Egglseton’s and Parr’s colourful aesthetics.
Klemen: I am ok with that. I want people to see, that I am being influenced by others, especially super-artists you mentioned. I don’t want to lie to myself, that I am not influenced by their work. In a way my work is a hommage, because I deeply respect the work of different photographers. Some of the work can really change your view on the world.
Aljaž: How long will you continue the project?
Klemen: It’s an on-going project. Like a diary, where I can check where I was, what I was doing. Maybe someday I’ll have an exhibition or maybe even a zine. I certainly want to continue the project, but it will be more like an addition to it, since I am starting new projects right now. I am an impulsive person, that’s why, so far, this “little” project really sucked me in.
image © Klemen Ilovar
text by: Aljaž Celarc
editing: Eva Pavlič Seifert