Forest, My Father
(2012 - 2014)

When I ask Stefan Kandrač, “Why do you like to change your house so often?” he replies, “Na zha nav - I don’t know - I love change! Change is very good.” In this family home, bunches of plastic flowers migrate their way from room to room. Furniture is reshuffled and moved, comes and goes. Floral canvas prints, and glittery stickers are dotted across the house. New wall paper, a new pattern, replaces patterns laid only weeks before. The Kandrač family house is in a constant state of flux; covered and re-covered, again and again, by effigies of the natural outdoors. Where centuries before, the Romany way of life was defined by mobility, today relatively bound to the places they live, in flats and houses, the Kandrač family maintain a yearning for change.

O Lord, where should I go?
What can I do?
Where can I find
Legends and songs?
I do not go to the forest,
I meet with no rivers.
O forest, my father...

The time of the wandering Gypsies
Has long passed. But I see them,
They are bright,
Strong and clear like water

(Papusza Bronisława Wajs)

© Michael Alberry 2023