Czech and Canadian b.1956
I first developed my photographic eye in Montreal, where I studied photography at Dawson College. But Dawson Collage teaches commercial photography, and in any case I found that I was more comfortable wandering the streets with my camera than being locked up in a studio.
Montreal’s streets were not enough for me, however, so I started to travel to different places. I became resolved to document the lives of people who are persecuted or neglected. In 1998, during the war in Kosovo, I encountered the Czech NGO, People in Need, and since then I have contributed to their efforts with my work.
It’s very important for me to be involved in the environment that I am photographing. To be accepted by the people I photograph and to become one of them is a part of what I do.
This takes time, but it allows me to be a privileged witness of social occasions and rituals that would otherwise be off-limits: births, baptisms, spiritual ceremonies, weddings and funerals.
I always carry my cameras (one digital and one film camera) with me in my backpack. The pack becomes a part of my body and if I don’t have it on me, I feel like I’m missing something. To have my cameras with me at all times gives me the opportunity to photograph anything that I find interesting, at anytime.
I’m represented by Panos Pictures.