Photographs can evoke much stronger emotions than optical memory alone. When you take a glance at an old photo, you may be able to recall specific smells, colors, events, and surroundings. Adolf Zika came to an intriguing realization after completing his book One Year of My Life. The publication required him to photograph nine pictures a day for an entire year. The memories embedded during this creative process and then subsequently brought about by looking at these nine photos were so significant that he was inspired to organize the current project, Week of Life. Without exaggeration, this may be one of the quickest and most effective ways to return to the past.
The basic building block of the project is the period of one week in the life of an individual, living anywhere on the globe. Every single one of the seven days in a week has a different meaning, smell, sight, a different sense with varying intensity and energy. The time span of one week can be characterized as a perfect display of human diversity and behavior. Human activity, be it willed or unwilled, is organized around this span of time, which is why a photo report can tell us so much about ourselves and others.
Every contributor becomes an indivisible piece, an unforgettable co-creator of the entire documentary cycle, an ever expanding mosaic of human originality, a gigantic photo archive of humanity in the 21st century.
A crucial factor is the personal creativity of the individual and the ability to express in nine photos the experiences and sensations of a given day. To enable another person to feel and read from these photographs whether the day was happy, sad, tragic or absolutely ordinary.
For a given week, a user, while uploading, has the option of providing a text below each of the seven days. This way he or she can emphasize the importance of the captured moment or simply describe what occurred that day. Text below a photo adds a completely new dimension and it may often be a communication of great significance. This way an individual may send a message to the entire world.
History of the project:
The mind behind Week of Life i3 the art photographer, director and producer Adolf Zika, who has completed several large photography projects and feature length films in the past. Despite his career beginning with an award for documentary photograph in a contest amongst professional photographers, as an art photographer he did not like taking his camera with him and photographing every day life and the people around him. The reason was simple, he was too shy. He was embarrassed to disrupt the world around him and constantly wave his camera in front of people’s faces.
The roots of this project reach back to 2006, when Adolf Zika received from Leica a D-Lux 3 compact camera. The gift did not come without a price and on the 6th of November Adolf Zika launched the most demanding project of his career. The decision was made. He would carry the camera on his person for an entire year. The compact camera followed him 24 hours a day, into all of his daily activities. After which, he posted the entire photo gallery on a secret address online. He watched and waited to see how his friends, family and acquaintances would react. Nothing short of a landslide could describe the interest of the site’s visitors and Adolf Zika’s own intrigue with the psychological aspect of the project.
Almost three years passed, when a discussion with his long-time friend and brilliant programmer, the Slovak-born Rado Korpa, inspired the two to create and mold an entirely new plan. Born from this discussion is the project known as Week of Life. After spending several months on development, hours of long discussions, debates and passionate arguments, the two meet a third person to join them. A Czech with an Argentinean passport, living long-term in the USA, Tomas Löwy would be the third part, completing the symbol of the project, a project that has the ambition of changing our opinions about the world and humanity. We’ll get a realistic dose of how we live, who we are, and what direction our lives will take, all of this without veneer or façade.
The philosophy of supporting an idea through contribution:
The founding idea behind Week of Life is to contribute to a “world photo archive of humanity”. Visitors have realized that by becoming a contributor to this project, they have become an indispensable piece of a larger collective treasure, which will remain for years to come, as a reference for other generations. Some have taken advantage of this medium, as citizens of the world, by contributing photos with a humanitarian concept and have thus helped spread a message across the globe, facilitating another person’s change of heart, change of perspective, or possibly even change in worldview. It is not the goal of this project to take up someone’s valuable time, personal freedom, or in any way step into his or her private life. The opposite is true, as we value the personal rights of our users more than anyone else on the web. Every contributor has the choice to set their level of disclosure which we will respect. As our varied level of comfort is too an indication of the many different perspectives we have.
That is why a user who is absolutely opposed to the idea of having someone else peer into his or her personal life can contribute his or her nine photos per day without capturing specific things, people, or surroundings. We encourage the submission of abstract pieces such as simple colors that capture feelings. Photography today provides us with a vast creative landscape with conceptual boundaries that are meant to be explored. In contrast, another individual may use Week of Life to display to the world a brutally honest and realistic photographic expression. For such a person this project is a means of self-reflection and self-understanding. Both of these are valued ways to contributing to this large documentary project of humanity.
One Year of My Life in 3285 Pictures by Adolf Zika:
You can order One Year of My Life in 3285 Pictures by Adolf Zika in Cooperation with Leica on the following address: