A symposium on Zofia Rydet's "Record"
Welcoming remarks by Sebastian Cichocki and Karol Hordziej

Due to the fact that Zofia Rydet’s project has never been shown in a sufficiently broad selection, it has remained shrouded in myth.

The aim of the symposium accompanying the exhibition "Zofia Rydet. Record, 1978-1990" is to change exactly that, by bringing the "Record" to use again, both as an object of interpretation as well as of photography theory; by contextualizing and interpreting Zofia Rydet's magnum opus from different points of departure, and thus making it available for further reflection.

However, it should be noted that “contextualize and interpret” should not be read as “legitimize in the art field”. Zofia Rydet entered the field of visual art, or that of art photography, from vernacular practice – the association of amateur photographers in Gliwice that yielded other important figures, such as Jerzy Lewczyński. We take this genealogy as a reminder that photography simply cannot be defined in purely aesthetic terms without performing a violent cut in the larger context it is embedded in.

This is why the participants of the symposium represent a broad spectrum of approaches to photography: to be able to look at the "Record" not only in terms of art and the history of photography, but also as a theoretical object, through which more can be said about photography as a social practice and tool of knowledge, as imaging technology and (visual) way of thinking, as well as its role in (re)constructing and (re)presenting the other, and the meaning of archiving the world.

See also: