Pole Position

(Gallery SPZ, Special guest: Josef Hohenberger)

In the motor sports terminology, the concept of the pole position refers to the first starting position, and despite the fact that there are different rules how to achieve the exclusive position within various disciplines, the racer usually gets to the head of the starting position on the basis of the victory achieved in the previous qualifier or qualifiers. The most important advantage consists in winning the pole position in Formula 1, since the typology of various racetracks represents, in the selected cases, the risk of complicated overtaking from the side of other opponents, and the first position at the start thus represents a crucial advantage for an experienced pilot.

Nevertheless, the Pole Position project follows, above all, the existing curator’s format of the SPZ Gallery, based on the presentation of a selected artist and his guest from outside the art sphere. At the same time, however, it follows Petr Dub’s TRANSFORMERS and REFRAMED cycles, exploring he formal limits of the classical suspension picture, the relevance of the adjustment of an artistic object in specific architecture, and the social function of the contemporary picture.

Dub’s current guest’s name is Josef Hohenberger. Je is twenty-one years old and one hundred and seventy-three centimetres tall, weighs sixty-three kilos, and rides a minibike of the Blata make with the racing number of ninety-nine. In 2009, he scored as the winner of the CzechBikers Minibike CUP. In 2008 and 2009, he became the champion of the Prague Minibike League in the category of BLATA 2.5 and in this season, he has not ended worse than in the third place. Out of the total number of thirty-two races, he achieved twenty-one victories, while also being the runner-up seven times, twice in the third place, and twice in the fourth place. Like the artistic activity of the exhibition’s author, Hohenberger’s activity is also accompanied with a number of professional skills and essential features typical of the given social group. Furthermore, both disciplines are provided with the definitions of various roles, hierarchies, or norms, while the sport itself may be regarded, in the contemporary world, as a certain kind of performance. However, is it possible to simply compare the functions of the afore-mentioned disciplines? And if so, to what extent to the afore-mentioned professional attributes affect the very result of the “race”?