The photography collection is an homage to all were and stayed young, had wanderlust in their hearts and were drawn to sleeping under the stars. Regardless of whether they called themselves tramps, woodcrafters, wanderers, vagrants, cowboys or whether they eventually fastened a satellite to their roofs, they all became a part of almost exclusively Czechoslovak phenomenon of tramping, which is considered to be Czechia’s largest subculture.
The project captures the tramps’ lives in Bohemia and Moravia with the aim to document this specific subculture, since there is currently no comprehensive visual testament of this Czech phenomenon. The project is akin to field research, photographed across various regions of the Czech republic. Tramping, inspired by the League of Forrest Wisdom, woodcraft, scouting and America’s Wild West, became Czechoslovakia’s alternative movement, bitterly tolerated by the time’s socio-political regime. The term tramp or wonderer is on one hand based on Jack London’s novels’ depictions of an individual not abiding by societal norms and living on the fringes of society. On the other hand, it is a movement based on friendship, togetherness, strong connection with nature and distancing oneself from a consumerist lifestyle and the bourgeoise. Due to the changes in societal norms and political regime, the movement underwent a transformation and a revival, and continues to exist in some form to this day. The culmination of the project is a book, exhibition and a short documentary film.
Tomas Pospech, curator
Libor Fojtik (*1977) is a graduate of master’s studies at the Institute of Creative Photography at FPF Silesian University in Opava. In his freelance work he mainly focuses on documentary and arranged photography. His documentary collections originate from long term journeys in countries such as Japan, India, Russia, Vietnam, Mongolia, New Zealand and more. Some of his Czech series focus on themes of consumerism and societal change, environment, the absurdity of everyday life, etc. In 2007 Fojtik became a photoreporter for the ISIFA photoagency. He works as a photographer for the Hospodarske newspaper since 2009. In the past he taught yearlong courses and photography workshops for the Institute of Digital Photography in Prague. His series Absurdistan – my home won the first prize in the FRAME photography competition and first prize in Czech Press Photo 2010’s category Everyday life. He was among the 60 finalists in the international LUMIX Photofestival in Hannover, a competition of young photojournalists. He authored multiple independent and collective exhibitions across the Czech republic and Europe.