‘HOAX’ by Agnieszka Sejud (b. 1991, Poland) is a story of Poland’s self-delusion. Sejud sheds light on a country where European political standards are considered radical and the mere idea of separating church from the state immediately creates unrest and turmoil. To highlight the occurrence of propaganda, manipulation of information and distribution of lies, Sejud adopts the techniques of collage and digital manipulation to reflect on the reality of post-truth and fake news in her home country.
The Catholic church is a privileged institution in Poland, having a significant amount of influence over the nation which, consequently, negatively affects various social groups. For instance, women, racial and sexual minorities are not considered to be “full” citizens and still today homosexuality is treated as a disease by some.
Sejud’s imagery contains symbolic elements specific of Polish culture – folk costumes, religious objects and the national flag’s colours. The seriousness of the issue is presented in an absurd and ironic way where manipulation in some images is apparent whereas in others is minimal, stimulating a playful interaction between the viewer and the image.
Agnieszka Sejud is a member of the KWAS collective. She is currently studying BA Photography at Silesian University in Opava, the Czech Republic. Her oeuvre is highlighted by an experimental approach, exploring the topics of identity, personal freedom and systems of oppression.