‘In the Swimming Pool’ is Maria Svarbova’s largest and most comprehensive series yet. Originating in 2014 and continuing to develop to date, this series by the 28-year-old Slovakian artist – who studied Restoration and Archaeology – has been published in prominent international magazines. The photographer’s fascination with the space of public swimming pools contributed to developing her distinctive visual style. Located in several sites in Slovakia, each image shows a different pool, usually built during the Soviet era, and the sterile, geometric beauty of these old pools sets the tone for the photographs. There is an almost cinematographic quality to the images, stressed by the artificial postures of the swimmers, filling the sceneries with dramatism and color. The apparently retro tones of the images evoke a futuristic atmosphere, almost otherworldly, further emphasized by their clarity and the bright pool tiles, that seem to have been placed ex profeso for these photographic shoots. The palette of pastel tones brings chromatic coherence to the whole series and to the very different pools, composing a consistent and heterogeneous collection despite the resemblance among takes.
The perfect scenes seem to have been created artificially to satisfy the needs of the image, but what they reflect is the photographer’s shrewd eye, and the chromatic precision in the design _x005F_x000D_
of the bathing suits.
_x005F_x000D_ The images highlight the visual cleanliness of the pools, where the few signs dialogue with the context, unlike what happens today in buildings and cities, too often overloaded with unnecessary signage.