Konrad Pustola, Dark rooms 2f (Warszawa), copyright Heir of Konrad Pustola, courtesy Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Modena

Hypothetisches Denken und die Politik der Probleme
curated by Robert Gruber

Konrad Pustola (1976 - 2015):
5 works from “Dark Rooms”
Opening: 05.09.2017 / 18:00 - 21:00
06.09. - 30.09.2017
Tuesday: 11:00 - 13:00
and by appointment +43 650 555 9 666

Finissage: 30.09.2017, 13:00 - 16:00

gottrekorder e.v.
Rechbauerstrasse 19 A
A - 8010 Graz

in cooperation with
Fondazione Fotografia Modena

Konrad Pustola

In order to follow a passion since his high school days in the United States and after a degree in Economy in Warsaw,
his hometown, Konrad Pustola (1976) decided to attend the National Film, Television and Theatre School of Łód ,
focussing his studies on Cinema and Photography. He completed his education in London, where in 2008 he obtained
his Master’s from the Royal College of Art. With time and experience, his enthusiasm for photography has turned
into a growing awareness on the possibilities of the medium as an instrument of criticism. For the RCA final exam exposition,
Pustola declared: “Being self-conscious of my own entanglement in the tensions and contradictions of ‘the system’,
I find a critique based on the illusion of openness far more convincing than a criticism based on exclusion.
And the moment that concept is grasped it feels like a breath of fresh air”.
Pustola’s temperament manifests itself both in his practical undertakings – he is the Vice President of the
Poniek d photographers’ association, member from 2000 to 2002 of the Latarnik web site editorial staff,
co-founder and photographer for the “T-shirt for freedom” campaign and Artistic Director of the magazine
Krytyka Polityczna – and in his creative strategies. Rather than creating alternative visions and worlds,
Pustola aims to place the viewer in front of a slice of reality, aware that any representation, for as much
as it tries to be neutral, is never completely objective. The only guarantee of correctness is therefore
to state one’s point of view and choose a system of representation that is coherent with it.
In Warsaw (2004–06) the artist uses pinhole photography, a traditional method that requires extended exposure time,
in order to narrate the state of desolation he feels the city has plunged into, whereas with the multimedia installation
S(t)imulations (2005), he raises issues relating to the role of the artist and to the possibility of accessing a work,
to mass media mechanisms and to the power images exert on real life. Dark rooms (2008) is a series made up of
panoramic images that explore a world that is normally hidden and, for this reason, the subject of stereotypical or
preconceived ideas and notions: the dark rooms in Polish nightclubs. Bursting onto the scene in the West between
the 1960s and 1970s, the phenomenon spread to Poland, a very Catholic country, in the early 1990s.
Pustola immerses himself in this underground world, photographing nightclubs right before they close.
The places are silent and deserted, the party is over and the cleaning up has not yet begun,
but the atmosphere is slightly unsettling, laden with the memory of all that has just taken place.

Text: courtesy Fondazione Fotografia, first published in the catalogue "History, Memory, Identity", Skira,2010.

A                                                 Athropological Raptus, Nr. 23*/241
for gottekorder e.v. Graz
Vienna, 23.07.2017

Hypothetical Thought and the Politics of Problems

/The trembling of the window grilles in the draught.

On the one hand, the wishes that we imagine, that we would like to introduce and make present to ourselves and to
each other, are coupled with expectations. On the other hand, they are ‘for the time being’,
there only for a certain time in retrospect, and as the presence of their realisation they are a determinable time.
To think something is itself (only) an attempt for the time being. That is, it (thinking) is not capable of bringing
the desired, the envisaged imagination, to its conclusion; to think it to its end. Indeed.
Therein lies the origin of our problems (even if they are only imaginary), which ultimately continue into
a determinable time that, in retrospect, has been (even if only as the past presence of their imaginations).
Our relationship to this and time management of it is the politics of these problems.

Thus our own management of an expectation of an imagination and its probably failed, defective,
not brought/thought-to-the-end realisation for the time being.
Politics consists and arises in the relation of the timeless, undetermined projection to a lack,
to the (temporal) limitation of realisation.
Such a projection never has alternatives; it contains no alternative imaginations.
The projection is unique and definitively present and, like every imagination, hypothetical.
At least the progression and continuation of this catastrophe in time is real. Every problem is a catastrophe,
for its real resultant moment of lack is not part of the envisaged, expected and desired state (an imagination),
and also cannot be traced to its hypothetical foundation.

This real state stands in a deconstructive relationship to and with the premises of the constructive imagination
(it is a construction ‘pro’* better knowledge or thinking and per se, like everything hyperreal,
deconstructive of reality)!

The politics of problems (in reference to the hypothesis) is divided into the following parts:
a) the letting go
b) the insistence
c) the management

The management of the failed imagination, of the real lack, is probably the only real (actuality
productive, thus potentially constructive) activity of a human being in his time.


So that the air which surrounds us and which we need is stirred. Air (more precisely, particles) is for
the time being a fitting description.
This real time of lack is ... airy. Also in the vital context of atmosphere, biology and movement ... the
foundations of all expectation. In the sense of constructive condensation, the stringing of single,
uniquely defined, smallest pressed-together particles, to make urgently present the movement of the
same as a mass/collective in a direction. And to define the direction of an ending/end.

In thinking of a past time ... without conclusion.

*vitium pro natura

Translated by Jonathan Uhlaner

A                                                 Athropologischer Raptus, Nr. 23*/241
für gottekorder e.v. Graz
Wien, 23.07.2017

Hypothetisches Denken und die Politik der Probleme

\ Das Zittern der Fenstergitter im Luftzug.

Einerseits sind die Wünsche, die wir uns vorstellen, die wir uns und einander selbst vorstellen möchten und
vorstellig machen, an Erwartungen gekoppelt. Andererseits sind sie "auf Zeit", im Nachhinein nur für eine
bestimmte Zeit gewesen und als Gegenwärtigkeit ihrer Realisation sind sie eine bestimmbare Zeit.
Etwas denken ist selbst (nur) ein Versuch auf Zeit. D. h. dass es (das Denken) nicht imstande sein kann
die gewünschte, erdachte Vorstellung an ihr Ende zu bringen; zu Ende zu denken. Allerdings.
Darin besteht der Ursprung unserer Probleme (und seien sie auch nur die Gedachten), die sich letztlich bis
zu einer im Nachhinein gewesenen, bestimmbaren Zeit fortsetzen (und sei sie auch nur die gewesene
Gegenwaertigkeit ihrer Vorstellungen). Unser Verhältnis und Zeitmanagement damit ist die Politik dieser Probleme.
Also unser selbst eigener Umgang mit Erwartung einer Vorstellung und deren wahrscheinlich gescheitert,
mangelhafte - nicht zu Ende gebrachte\gedachte - Realisation auf Zeit.
Die Politik besteht und entsteht nun im Verhältnis des zeitlosen unbestimmten Entwurfs zum Mangel, zur
(zeitlichen) Begrenztheit der Realisierung.
Ein Solcher Entwurf hat niemals Alternativen - er beinhaltet keine Alternativen Vorstellungen.
Der Entwurf ist einzig und definitiv vorstellig und - wie jede Vorstellung- hypothetisch.
Zumindest das Voranschreiten und sich Fortsetzen dieser Katastrophen in der Zeit ist real.
Jedes Problem ist eine Katastrophe denn dessen real gezeitigtes Moment des Mangels ist nicht Teil des erdachten,
erwarteten und gewünschten Zustands (einer Vorstellung) und ist auch nicht auf seine
hypothetischen Grundlagen zurückzuführen.
Denn dieser reale Zustand steht in einem dekonstruktiven Verhältnis zu und mit den Prämissen der
konstruktiven Vorstellung (sie ist eine Konstruktion „pro“* besseres Wissen bzw. Denken und
per se - wie alles Hyperreale - die Realität dekonstruierend)!
Die Politik der Probleme ist (in Bezug auf die Hypothese) geteilt wie folgt in:
a) das Loslassen
b) das Beharren
c) das Management

Das Management der gescheiterten Vorstellungen, des realen Mangels ist wohl die einzige reale
(wirklichkeitsstiftende also potentiell konstruktive) Tätigkeit eines Menschen in seiner Zeit.


Damit die Luft die uns umgibt und die wir brauchen bewegt ist. Luft (genauer Teilchen) ist zur Zeit eine
passende Beschreibung.
Diese reale Zeit des Mangels ist ... luftig. Auch in dem lebensnotwendigen Zusammenhang von Atmosphäre,
Biologie und Bewegung... der Grundlagen aller Erwartung. Im Sinne der konstruktiven Verdichtung,
der Reihung einzelner einzig definierter kleinster aneinandergedrückter Teilchen, um die Bewegung derselben
als Masse/Kollektiv in eine Richtung drängend vorstellig zu machen. Um die Richtung eines Endens\Endes
zu definieren.

Im Denken an eine gewesene Zeit ... ohne Abschluss

*vitium pro natura

Konrad Pustola, "Dark Rooms", courtesy Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Modena

Konrad Pustola: Dark Rooms, Essays by Olga Tokarczuk & Alexander Garcia Düttmann, Warszawa 2010