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AIVIS SMULDERS. "RESEMBLANCE AND COMMENTARIES"
2010.08.05–2010.12.05
The solo show “Resemblance and Commentaries” by Aivis Smulders displays more than 40 photographs. The exhibition includes works that were presented in 1986 in the photographer's solo exhibition “Draught” and were taken between the 70’s and 80’s, as well as digital photographs taken recently. Aivis Smulders creates black and white works of a delicate notion which is achieved by using photomontage, different copying techniques, retouch and other technical methods. The pictures portray nonexistent landscapes created by the imagination of the photographer and using filigree photomontage and retouch. By combining nature objects from different stills the author creates metaphors, associations and symbols that stay in mind. Photo manipulation using nature objects was a novelty in Latvian photography at that time. Aivis Smulders says about his work as a photographer: “I think that in photography I am a romantic with a tendency towards decoration and melancholia.” (Fotokvartāls magazine, August 2008).

The photographer's idea is to divide photographs into triptychs – to add one documentary photograph to two works photographed earlier, thus making the viewer to search for similarities and commentaries and to see things differently.

Aivis Smulders was born in Riga on May 24, 1940. On June 1941 his family was deported to Siberia. His father was shot on May 15, 1942 according to the court decision in Vyatka labor camp, Kirova region. In January 1943 his mother passed away. Aivis was sent to an orphanage in Malaya Muromka, Kargasok region, Tomsk district which is in the very North at the Oba River affluent. Aivis was adopted by a family deported from Ukraine. His name was Victor and he was speaking only Russian. Sisters found their brother and on April 1947 he returned to Latvia. Aivis became interested in photography while studying in Riga Industrial Polytechnic School. His first camera was “Smena”. While working in VEF factory Aivis was introduced to the photographers Viktors Spungis and Olgerts Melgalvis and from 1969 till 1978 he took part in VEF photo studio activities. From 1978 he is a member of the photo club “Rīga”. Aivis Smulders has taken part in more than 100 group exhibitions in Latvia and abroad, has earned the AFIAP (Artist of The International Federation of Photographic Art) title (1988), and has organized 20 solo exhibitions. In 2007 Alvis was awarded with the 3rd place in one of the photography categories in the contest of Latvian photography award of the year organised by “Latio”.