First photography / 50-60
An encounter with Milos Sejn’s photographs leads me to several ideas in the sphere of which the outlines of the meaning of this genre within the overall direction of Sejn’s art work may emerge. The suggestion of integrity is induced by this art work, with its inner tension between the many-sidedness and tightness and the idea of the organising order of the world, which is manifested through the synthesising effort accompanied by patience in surmounting each step leading to the entirety, still preserving the focus on a specified area. Such an approach in my notes is also supported by the fact that Milos Sejn considers photography to be a marginal, yet no less serious area of his activity, the centre of which he sees in painting, although he may have taken photographs before he started to paint. It may also seem paradoxical that this collection of photographs is actually his artistic debut. A journey on a steep slope is always slower and only rarely straight. Sejn’s conviction of marginality of photography still does not reject the fact however specific photography is, some features are manifested through it which resound with the overall direction of his art work. These features will emerge while viewing the collection.
Photography for Milos Sejn has since the very beginning been closely bound to his interest in nature which, however, has never been a mere aesthetic view but was connected with studying it and, for some time, with a specialist’s narrow focus. The period of ornithological fever, when he waited for hours, hidden in lakeside vegetation, for a convenient moment to trigger his camera, was a lucky connection of two technically quite mastered expert skills, in which photography was subordinate to scientific interest, while this interest found its expression primarily in photography. Anyway, the recognition of organic order, brought forth by a scientific approach, was not the truth in finding where Milos Sejn would see his true realisation. Therefore, his interests moved closer towards expression designated as art expression. The tendency towards specialisation, revealing not only one of his character qualities, remains typical for the method of art work based, on the one hand, on a profound knowledge of what the subject of art creation is and the manner in which this creation will be made. Thus, despite the fact that the exhibited collection lacks a single scientific photograph, I found it necessary to mention this approach, as also in this case the discovery of secrets of the natural order is the hidden fundament. Understanding it is relatively similar to Callois’ approach of “cross sciences” which seeks joint rules between the natural kingdoms while revealing naturally anchored functions of the art form, its creation and growth in an area or space of an art work.
Light in Stones
by Jan K. Celis, 1977