Luka Hernet / I run, but I stay
UGM Šop, Strossmayerjeva ulica 6
1 September – 4 December 2022

curator: Jure Kirbiš

Photographer Luka Hernet presents scenes of his hometown in his first solo show – Maribor in a new light, as you’ve never seen it before. Representations of Maribor in photography range from high-contrast black and white photography of the Maribor Circle (Ivan Dvoršak, Janko Jelnikar, Zmago Jeraj etc.) to heavily-saturated polished tourist images. Hernet, on the other hand, captures Maribor in a pastel palette and diffused light of purposely overexposed photographs. The passage of time – the hour of the day, the change of season, or the patina of age – influences the colour scheme of Hernet's photography. The sun is high on the blue or grey sky, the paint off of buildings and other structures has faded in the rain and the sun, there is the vivid green of the spring buds, the yellow of the burnt grass and the brown of the bare trees in the winter drought.

The photographs were taken at a time when public life was completely at a standstill and when travel, even close by, was impossible. At that time, many of us discovered our home environment - and sometimes saw it completely anew, from a different perspective. "Photos are an escape from a comfortable, domestic environment. Even though this city is my home, at that time I wanted to escape somewhere else. These photos are my escape.” The result is an interesting exercise in style – to look for foreignness in the home environment, to imagine a situation in another reality, to map a familiar scene into another world, to escape but stand still. "In the series, I wanted to photograph buildings - residential, industrial, sports, commercial - as if they were in another place. Let's say in some kind of industrial zone in America or a block utopia in England." Especially for the residents of Maribor, Hernet's photos are such a beautiful souvenir, postcards from foreign places, when our city traveled far away through Hernet's lens during the pandemic.

Luka Hernet (b. 1998, Maribor) is a photography student at the Academy in Maribor. Since 2018, he has been engaged in street, concert and author photography. He photographed the bands Matter, Haiku Garden, .travnik, Alo!Stari and others. His photographs have been published in the book Close to Heaven (Trash Press, USA), the magazine Banal Mag (Great Britain) and the magazine Cukr (Slovenia), the latter of which is available at the UGM bookstore.