Ode to Joy | Dances for Seniors (2013-2016, Czech Republic)
This photo series documents the active social life of seniors. Despite their advanced age they have not resigned to enjoy life and spend their time together on the afternoon senior dance parties which take place in many Czech towns and villages. Although some of the participants have already died recently, this humanistic documentary series is rather optimistic by showing us that the active ageing, full of positive emotions, can be the right choice for elderly. Even for the rest of us, who are still 'young', those captured moments can bring some positivism into our hearts in today's world full of fear and negativity. The entertainment – a festive dimension of human life – shows us how much is the life of elderly interrelated with a childlike playfulness, “childishness” and spontaneity, associated with search for an unknown (in childhood) and celebration of a lived life (in old age). Hence the photographic analogy with “Ode to Joy” written by Friedrich Schiller in 1785 to celebrate a friendship among people.
The images have been taken at the regular senior dance parties held in many towns and villages in the Czech Republic between 2013 and 2016.