WHILE LITERATURE IS JUSTIFIED BY THE „SEARCH INSIDE“, I FIND THAT PHOTOGRAPHY
ENABLES ME TO “SEARCH INSIDE“ THROUGH THE OUTSIDE FOUND WITH THE CAMERA.
Tichá (which means silence) is a border village in southern Bohemia, one wooded hillside away from where photographer Helmut Steinecker lives. In his simultaneously lush and restrained photographic essay Tichá, Steinecker conveys the aura of this formerly restricted zone along what was once the Iron Curtain and is now referred to as the Green Belt. He captures a sense of silent anticipation in his photographs of the village, the landscape and its ruins from almost half a century of a divided Europe, and captures the village—as the old bombedout buildings are removed one by one, beginning to settle into a new identity halfway between ruins and kitsch. Framed in a tactile green silk fabric cover Steinecker’s color images are both objectively concentrated and emotionally affecting. A narrative text by writer Thomas Ballhausen with recollections of the once ironclad threats opens up further dimensions in this eloquent photographic essay.
© Helmut Steinecker 2018