Slightly Erotical Ballades – Kinga Michalska, Sasha Kurmaz

Sasha Kurmaz, Kinga Michalska
16/05/2017 – 04/06/2017
opening: Tuesday, 16/05/2017, 7 p.m.
Opcja gallery, 38 Piłsudskiego St., Cracow

In times when the body is increasingly (and rightly) seen in the perspective of political instrument, we propose an exhibition convened by irony, humor and satire, which can be regarded as fully legitimized tactics of talking about sexuality and carnality.

The title ballad as a genre that combines characteristics of poetry, drama and epic captures what in the photos of Kinga Michalska and Sasha Kurmaz is most visible – emotion, action, mood and narration, whether in the sense of the interplay of work on one another, or the possible dialogue between the photographer and the viewer.

It is no coincidence that the title also refers to the popular television series “Slightly Erotical Ballad”, which was broadcast in Polish television in 2003. While the ethical dimension of the program raises objections, its groundbreaking role in the public debate on sexuality cannot be denied. “Attracting the audience more than Małysz”, the series broke the binding taboo on carnality and intimate life, a subject that even today, a few years later, is still controversial.

Finally, the title ballad is an intertextual reference to Nan Goldin and her series “The Ballad of Sexual Dependency” – nearly 700 personal portraits that documented the life of the New York and Boston bohemians of the eighties. Photos so honest, natural, spontaneous and a u t h e n t i c that they started a new, designated by these epithets trend in photography.

All of these contexts accompanied us in creating an exhibition, which is a collection of photographs from sex positive attitude, affirming sex regardless of the preferences depend on social acceptability. Each of the works is an individual artist ballad about sexuality and physicality remaining outside the social and moral control. Artists combining erotic mood with naturalness show that sexuality can be lived in many ways, and sex itself is an important element of life.

About Artists

Kinga Michalska – visual artist working mainly with photography and video, LGBTQ community activist. In her work she discusses issues of marginalized communities, identities and genders. She creates works that are socially engaged, process-oriented, inspired by the theory of intersecting feminism. Graduate from Warsaw University and photography at the Warsaw School of Photography. Exhibited her work in Poland and Canada in many solo and group shows. Currently she is mentored by Paul Landon as part of the Diversite Artistique Montreal program.

Sasha Kurmaz – Ukrainian artist. Works in various media, primarily with photography and conceptual art in public space. International exhibitions and scholarships participant.

Event is organized within the framework of Queer May Festival (, Queer May FB)

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