Frozen in Time: an exhibition of Solargraphy

Kamil with solargraph print at the Falkirk Wheel

After a long and exciting day of working in IT, I like to experience the analogue side of the world. There is nothing more rewarding than capturing it with a completely hand-made camera put together on a kitchen table!

Over the past 20 years of photographing with increasingly advanced and capable digital cameras, I never felt really excited about them the same way I feel when holding an old 35mm rangefinder loaded with a roll of Kodak.

While learning about alternative photographic processes I came across solargraphy – a way of using a pinhole camera and photographic paper without chemical processing to catch the sun’s daily journey across the sky, with exposure times ranging from hours to several years. It is the most basic form of photography, and yet those simple boxes create dreamy, otherworldly images when done right.

From sanding hand-drilled holes under a microscope, through creative ways of hiding the cameras from curious eyes, to the final image – the entire process feels immersive and rewarding. It allows me to capture the passage of time beyond the short glimpses of the world we experience with our own senses.

As well as more familiar places, please enjoy a small preview of a series taken in Ukraine that I have been working on since 2018. One of my passions is documenting the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, a 30-km wide site of the largest nuclear disaster in history. Solargraphy feels like the perfect technique for capturing this desolated, crumbling and inhabitable world.

When looking at my photographs, think of a tree perceiving the passage of time, living in the same spot for eternity.

Riccio Gallery is delighted to present Kamil’s work, printed on our Canon printer and presented in simple black frames. All the images can be printed to order and framed. The pieces on show will remain until the end of the exhibition in late May

All images Copyright © Kamil Budzyński 2023