TOMASZ TOMASZEWSKI – SUGAR TOWN

04.04 - 15.05.2013
  • Tomasz Tomaszewski

    Tomasz Tomaszewski

  • Tomasz Tomaszewski

    Tomasz Tomaszewski

  • Tomasz Tomaszewski

    Tomasz Tomaszewski

  • Tomasz Tomaszewski

    Tomasz Tomaszewski

  • Tomasz Tomaszewski

    Tomasz Tomaszewski

  • 20_T.TOMASZEWSKI

    20_T.TOMASZEWSKI

In 1933, Java was one of the world’s leading sugar producer. Sugarcane cultivation and processing technologies had been brought to the island by the Dutch three centuries earlier. In 1945, Indonesia regained its independence and the industry was nationalised. Only around ten out of over two hundred factories have remained until today. All of them are operating steam-powered machines installed over a hundred years ago and although labour is relatively cheap, production costs in Brazil or Suriname are even lower, what brings the slow demise of the industry and forces Indonesia to import sugar.

Small languid towns built around sugar mills, suddenly come to life again at the beginning of the production season. They are swarmed by casual workers, peddlers and travelling funfairs. Tomaszewski’s photographs capture this special time in the life of a ‘sugar town’.

The prestigious Dutch Noorderlicht foundation commissioned six photographers (Alejandro Chaskielberg, James Whitlow Delano, Ed Kashi, Carl de Keyzer, Tomasz Tomaszewski, Francesco Zizola), to prepare
a photographic report about sugar production in the former Dutch colonies and countries which had economic links with the Netherlands. “My task was to document sugar mills in Java. Presented photos depict a fragment of what I managed to capture with my camera as part of my assignment” – explains Tomasz Tomaszewski.

Tomasz Tomaszewski – born in 1953. Graduated from Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, degree in Faculty of Media Art and Stage Design. Is a member of the Union of Polish Art Photographers (ZPAF), the Visum Archiv Agency of Hamburg, The Image Collection Agency of Washington D.C. and the American Society of Magazine Photographers. He specializes in press photography and has had his photos published in major newspapers and magazines worldwide including “Stern”, “Paris Match”, “Geo Magazine”, “New York Times”, “Time”, “ Die Zeit”, etc. He has also authored a number of books: The Last Jews of Poland; Gypsies: The Last Ones; In Search of America; In The Centre; Astonishing Spain; A Stone’s Throw and has co-illustrated over a dozen collective works. He has held numerous individual exhibitions. Tomaszewski is the recipient of many Polish and international awards for photography. For over twenty years he has been a regular contributor to National Geographic Magazine, in which 18 of his photo essays have been published. He is conducting photographic workshops in Poland, USA, Germany and Italy.

Curator: Joanna Kinowska