When working on this project, I encountered several emotions inherently bound to the life of migrant worker: isolation
(from not knowing a foreign language and inability to financially afford a full participation in social life); powerlessness
(due to lack of adequate social and political rights); homesickness (desire to be with family and friends); and sexual frustration
(caused by lack of privacy, isolation and absence of loved ones. The migrant workers from the 50’s to 70’s lived torn between periods
of frustration while working abroad, and sequentially periods of joy and a sense of pride when returning home.
These cycles repeated—often for much longer that initially anticipated—until the workers either permanently returned back
to their country or decided to remain abroad. The repetition seemed to run through almost all of aspects of the workers’ lives.
The migrant’s work was often unqualified and as such consisted of a small array of repetitive movements and actions that form
a part of the production process. The repetition had also been manifested in the constant influx of workers as well as their personal stories.
The multitude of individual dreams that form one universal wish – to find happiness through comfort and material security.

The photographs for this project were all taken at the London Brick Factory, largely responsible for the influx of Italian migrant workers to the UK.
While I photographed in this concrete location, my concern wasn’t with this particular factory, nor its individual workers.
I was interested in the archetypal place that would suggest some of the above-mentioned aspects of a migrant worker’s life. Far from comprehensive,
far from touching like for example photographs taken by Jean Mohr in the 70’s, this work is just a footnote to a past that has already
happened and cannot be retold from my current position as a photographer. This said, it doesn’t mean that it cannot
repeat or that it’s not being repeated again and again around the world.

 

 

Mientras trabajaba en este proyecto, encontré diferentes emociones inherentemente atadas a la vida de un emigrante: aislamiento
(al no saber el idioma foraneo y carecer de medios económicos para tener vida social); impotencia (por la falta de adecuación social y derechos políticos);
añoranza (por el deseo de estar con familia y amigos); y frustración sexual (por la falta de privacidad y ausencia de seres amados).
Los emigrantes vivieron secuencialmente periodos de frustración mientras trabajaban fuera y periodos de disfrute
y sentido de orgullo cuando volvian a casa. Estos ciclos se repitieron hasta que los trabajadores decidian volver a casa o quedarse definitivamente
fuera de sus lugares de origen.

El trabajo de los emigrantes solia ser no cualificado y consistía en una pequeña selección de acciones y movimientos repetitivos que
formaban parte del proceso de producción. La repetición se manifestaba también en el constante flujo de trabajadores así como
en sus historias personales, la multitud de sueños individuales forma un deseo universal que busca encontrar la felicidad a través del confort
y la seguridad material.

Las fotografías de este proyecto fueron tomadas en la Fabrica de Ladrillos de Londres, en gran parte responsable del flujo de emigrantes italianos
hacia el Reino Unido. Mientras fotografiaba en esta localización, mi interés no se dirigía a la fabrica en particular ni a sus trabajadores.
Me interesaba el lugar arquetípico que me sugeriría algunos de los aspectos antes mencionados respecto a la vida de los emigrantes.

 
b.1985 in Czech Republic, lives and works in London, UK.EDUCATION
MA Photography, Royal College of Art – 2010-12
First Class Honors, BA Photographic Arts, University of Westminster in London – 2007-10AWARDS
Metro Imaging Award, 2012, UK.
Plat(t)form 2012. Fotomuseum Winterthur, CH.
Fresh Faced & Wild Eyed 2011. The Photographer’s Gallery, UK
Flash Forward 2011. Magenta Foundation, UK Honorable MentionSELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2012
Indexes and Other Figures, Berlin, DE.
RCA Show 2012, Royal College of Art, London, UK.
Coal & Steel, Candid Arts Trust . London, UK.
Black Thorns in the White Cube, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, US.
Hijacked III, Quad, Derby, UK & Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, AU.
2011
The Wonders of The Visible World, Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art, Sunderland, UK.
How Looking Gets in the Way of Seeing, Twelve Around One Gallery, London, UK.
Altitude +1000 Festival de Photographie de Montagne, Rossiniere, CH.
Construct (Royal College of Art MA Photography at Folkestone Triennial), various venues, Folkestone, UK.
Velvet, Red Gallery, London, UK.
The Collector’s Guide to New Art Photography Vol. 2, Chelsea Museum of Art, New York, USA.
Oblong Gallery Presents (with Jh Engstrom, Laura Hynd, Michael Grieve), London, UK.
RCA Work in Progress, Royal College of Art, London, UK.
re: control, Oubliette at Shaftesbury Avenue, London, UK.
2010
This Must be The Place, Jerwood Art Space, London, UK.
Women in Art Photography U.K., London, UK.
Free Range, Truman’s Brewery, London, UK.
One or Several Wolves , The Haggerston, London UK.
120 x120 Cover Exhibition, 66 Gallery, Prague, CZ.
2009
30. Photographic Show – Shoreditch Town Hall, London, UK. 

SELECTED PUBLICATIONS
Monographs:
When Shuts One Eye One Does Not Hear Everything (self-published zine), 2011.
The Wallace Collection (self-published zine), 2010.
Supreme Vice (artist’s limited edition), 2010.
Supreme Vice (published by Morel Books), 2010.
Watch Your Skin Peel (self published book), 2009.

Group publications:
Index of Time (self-published artist book – with Peter Watkins and Oliver Shamlou), 2012.
Seeing for Others (published by Black Dog Publishing), 2012.
Hijacked III (published by Big City Press), 2012.
The Collector’s Guide to Emerging Art Photography (published by Humble Arts Foundation), 2011.
This Must be The Place (exhibition catalogue), 2010.

COLLECTIONS
Fotomuseum Winterthur (CH)

RESIDENCIES
School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Chicago, US, Autumn 2011.
Rossiniere, CH, April 2011.

SELECTED REVIEWS AND INTERVIEWS
British Journal of Photography, July 2012, UK.
Komfort Mag, Issue 7, December 2011, CZ.
Enter Magazine, Issue 5, September 2011. SK.
Tiger Magazine, photographic essay about Strawberry Hill House. ES.
Lazy Dog, Issue 2, 2011, SK.
Profile Zine, Issue 2, July 2011, CL.
Under/Current Magazine, interview with Alexander Binder, May 2011, UK.
1000 Words Photography Magazine, review of ‘Supreme Vice’ book published by Morel (February 2011). UK.
Aesthetica Magazine, ‘Interrogating Location in Today’s Photography’ by David Campany, December/January 2011. UK.
NY Times T Magazine Blog, article about NY Art Book Fair, November 2010. USA
Vice Magazine Photo Issue, Still-life, November 2010. CZ
It’s Nice That, article about my work by Michael Salu, October 2010. UK
British Journal of Photography, ‘Why Don’t You…?’ by Bruno Ceschel and Diane Smyth, October 2010. UK
Self-Publish be Happy, July 2010. UK
Source Magazine Online, special selection from Graduate Photography 2010 by Charlotte Cotton, July 2010. UK
British Journal of Photography, ‘The kids are alright no.2’, article by Diane Smyth, June 2010. UK
Too Much Chocolate, interview with Grant Willing, June 2010. USA
Humble Arts Foundation, ‘Photo Book of the Week’ curated by Grant Willing, June 2010. USA
One or Several Wolves, Catalogue, 2010. UK
Carpaccio Magazine, February Issue, 2010. ES
Hype Magazine, Issue 23: Army, 2007. CZ

www.terezazelenkova.com

 

 
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