Photographer based in Warsaw. His photographs, at first glance simple, are swamped with context and references to the history of culture, while losing nothing of their 'freshness'.
‘I have an M.A. from Warsaw University’s Institute of Philosophy’ – declares Witek Orski (born 1985) by way of an introduction. Orski has been active on the arts scene since 2008. His photographs – fashion sessions, personal projects and portraits – have been published in, among others, Exklusiv, Gazeta Wyborcza, the quarterly WAW, as well as the French photography magazine l’héliotrope and the British S.P.B.H. On the one hand, his work is barefacedly subjective, slightly pornographic, graphic and mannerist, while on the other it is minimalist, post-Tellerian, tender and banal. The photographer himself describes his works by means of a crazy map of contrasts: vulgar elements (loo-hygiene), sensory elements (soft–hard, black–white, dry–moist), undefined elements (metaphor–photographic plate), and names and categories connected with philosophy (power – Nietzsche, eroticism – Bataille, sexuality – Foucault, bodies without organs – Deleuze), art history (theatricality – Fried), theatre (bodies in motion – Artaud), modern literature (Littell), art (Bacon), and photography (Wall). His photographs, at first glance simple, are swamped with context and references to the history of culture, while losing nothing of their 'freshness' (another key Orski characteristic).
Orski’s photographs have been featured in, among other places, Photomonth in Kraków and Łódź’s MŁodzi gallery. Along with Janek Zamoyski, in 2010 Orski launched the independent photography gallery Czułość in Warsaw, which brings together the work of young artists. He actively propagates the idea of self-publishing, and is also co-author of the scripts and acted as cameraman for three documentary films directed by Agnieszka Arnold (Unfinished Congress, 2009; How It Is, 2011, Rotem, 2013).
Orski's first solo show The Vulgar was held at Czułość Gallery in 2012.
Witek Orski's website: vvors.blogspot.com
The original text was published in The Decisive Moment. New Phenomena in Polish Photography Since 2000, Karakter, 2012
Author: Adam Mazur, October 2012
Update: AM, Jan 2014