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Łódź Photo Festival : Filip Piotrowicz and the political weapon of skateboarding


Presented at the portfolios reviews of the Łódź photo festival in Poland, the series by this 25-year-old photographer questions social stereotypes and shows that a subculture constitutes a transversal link between the inhabitants of a country.

For several years now, the “degree of urbanization” of a place has been measured in the European Union. This classification called “Degurba” can be seen as a negative label applied to the less populated territories or the most isolated from urban lifestyles, for those who remain on the margins of an economy and a society very oriented towards globalization and ease of travel.

It was with great questioning in the face of this political labeling that Filip Piotrowicz went to interview the inhabitants of a so-called zone “3”, that is to say rural and isolated from large urban regions. He wanted to see if this apparent stigma had any real consequences and if there was another culture there. He who knows skateboarding well actually realized that the skateboarding community in this part of Poland was just like the one in the big cities.

Thus, in this project, which is still under construction and has not found its final form, the photographer digs into this trail of a counter-culture that ignores any label and any pre-established identity. The strength of his questioning is to point out the political dimension of a group of teenagers who first meet for the pleasure of sport culture. The field for the invention of new social relations going beyond any technocratic and abstract vision, giving back a human face sometimes threatened by the political apparatus.

Jean-Baptiste Gauvin

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