Photographer Sergej Vutuc takes his black-and-white skate-inspired photography to Brighton for new show Repeater, Till We.

Photographer Sergej Vutuc takes his black-and-white skate-inspired photography to Brighton for new show Repeater, Till We.

Sergej Vutuc is an Eastern European photographer, skater and ‘zinemaker who now lives in Hellbronn, Germany. He’s been shooting pictures and shredding guitar and skateboard for almost twenty years and his work has a distinct distressed vibe that reflects the environments he encounters through these cultures.

The maker of many ‘zines Sergej has also produced a book Something In Between, published by Carhartt, and was featured in the rad Phil Evans film Format Perspective that explores the work, lives and opinions of six European skate photographers including Nils Svensson (Malmo), Stu Robinson (Belfast), Alex Irvine (London), Rich Gilligan (Dublin) and Bertrand Trichet (Barcelona).

Sergej is on a life road trip and is in the UK at the moment for a series of pop-up shows in different cities that exhibit his most recent work as well as some classics from the archives. We caught up at his eponymous show at Edson’s Wayward Gallery and here’s what the analogue freak had to say.

When did you start making ‘zines/shooting photos?
Everything started in the middle 90s with playing in bands and making records – it was very important to be involved in ‘zines. It was a medium and a voice – for exchanges in the scene, thinking and activism. So ‘zines and photography were always naturally there. Also I was skateboarding so video and photography were there, to document, archive and express self.

What are the series of photos that you’re touring around the UK at the moment all about?
I have with me a small archive of the last years… photo prints, photocopies, ‘zines, some negatives in case I find a darkrooom to produce new stuff. Setting up the show for me is new every time because I’m exploring the space and memories and building a story.

There’s lots of stuff going on – ‘zines, prints, ephemera, books. Why did you decide to present things in this way?
One part of the answer is in the question before. But with presentation, there are some writings on wall, there are frames built from found wood around the gallery… So there are many steps of the process, but it’s important to me that the visitor is open to make the space their own.

Can you tell us a bit about the process – from darkroom to customising with pen and scalpel?
I love to be in the darkrooom… to fall into moments from the past and the feelings of that moment. So I am leaving my feelings and thoughts on the images by putting chemicals by hand on them and writing on them and scratching and soooo on.

What do you do for a living and how does zinemaking/photography fit into your life?
At the moment I am on the road and I wish to tour around the world. So mostly what I am doing at the moment is silkscreening my drawings and photos on T-shirts, ‘zines, prints, tattoos, playing shows – soooo many different things just to keep going.

What are your favourite zines and who are your favourite photographers?
Uh, hard question but in the end the best ones are friends’ ones. Like Boldrider and other stuff that Lele [Boldrider] does. Jocko Weyland stuff, like Elk Zine. Tadej Vaukman, Jai Tanju, James Hall Horse Zine, Rich Jacobs, Phil Jackson and soooooo on.

Sergej Vutuc has a solo exhibition Repeater, Till We at Space @ Create in Brighton, October 3-5.