Through the medium of photography, Fitzpatrick’s research addresses concepts of dispossession, impoverishment and marginalisation in capitalist society through an investigation of social upheaval of Eastern Europe, and specifically the Czech Republic. Using a combination of theatrical performance, found objects and text, Fitzpatrick creates weirdly captivating images that reenact actual events and scenes he has observed and recorded on the streets of Prague. This series sets out to re-interpret established critical thinking on the proliferation of documentary photography, such as Guy Debord’s ‘The Society of the Spectacle’ 1967, and Susan Sontag’s, ‘On Photography’, 1977, by looking at how the staging of individual experience can represent moments in history and by contrast, challenge preconceived notions that the only role of photography in the age of digital mass media is to exemplify reality and authenticity. Fitzpatrick’s intention to work outside of conventional photography formats has lead him to investigate contemporary industrial printing techniques, such as large scale inkjet prints on sheets of plywood.
- Erica Seccombe © 2012