textThe selection of photographic motives has been made according to personal consumption during a period of three months in Taipei. After summing up my expenses, I returned to the companies where I bought most things and took a photograph of the building facade which contained the store front. Thus the decision what to photograph has been directly derived from the previous decision what to buy.
The project took place during my stay at the Taipei Artist Village in Taiwan. My aim in creating this project was to look at the city through the structure created by personal consumer decisions instead of tourist guides or casual interest. My stay was an activity of cultural exchange, which also had its economic dimension. This dimension is transformed into a survey of Taipei’s building facades, which would otherwise not become the object of photography.
The project builds on the concepts of psychogeography and ethnography of everyday life, yet both methods are transformed by introducing consumption as the central element. The object of observation is not the subjective impression of the city, or the observation of the self as a consumer, but an image of the city as the reflection of consumer decisions. The result is simultaneously a diary of my stay as well as an alternative probe into the everyday architecture of Taipei.
Two photographs of the Carrefour superstore, photographed one month apart from each other, have a prominent place in the exhibition. They refer to the recurring patterns of consumption, as well as to a historical link between Czech Republic and Taiwan. In 2005, Tesco and Carrefour companies decided to exchange their stores: Tesco took over all Carrefour stores in Czech Republic, while Carrefour took over all Tesco stores in Taiwan. In this way the photographs bring back one of the Taiwanese Carrefour stores to Czech Republic.
The exhibition consists of photographs as well as of enlarged copies of invoices which document a number of typical purchases. The whole project is brought together in a series of three photo-books documenting the tree months of consumption in Taiwan.
The exhibition is supported by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office, Prague, Czech Republic.