Thomas Zika has been a Senior Lecturer in Photography at the University of Wuppertal, Cologne and now teaches in private academies in Cologne and Essen. He is represented by galleries in Los Angeles, The Hague, and with Four Square Fine Arts in the UK.
Thomas Zika is interested in fine art photography and its ability to alter our perception of reality. His conceptual and experimental techniques have helped him to develop a unique pictorial language and his works are held in numerous public and private collections throughout the world.
“Butterflies – I Saved an Admiral’s Life” focuses on Zika’s passion for butterflies. Having caught and mounted hundreds as child for his father’s entomological collections he later finds it a matter of conscience to go out of his way to save any butterflies he sees in danger. Zika began a few years ago to compile collages of photographs that he and his father had taken of butterflies along with motifs and images from nature magazines, wallpaper, real butterflies, moths, pressed flowers and grasses. The assemblages were then photographed on a large format camera. For Zika the fact that the butterfly is culturally significant in many traditions is important. In Ancient Greek and in Christian iconography the butterfly represents the soul freed from the physical body at the point of death and has become a symbol of transformation through metamorphosis. It is this mystery that Zika seeks to illuminate in this series of work.