Zdeněk Lhoták /1949/ graduated from FAMU (the Film & Television Faculty of the Academy of Musical Arts) in 1985 in the field of artistic photography, and has since 1979 been an independent photographer; he lives in Prague.
In 1986 he was awarded second prize in the sports serial category of the World Press Photo competition for his series "Spartakiada". From 1997 to 1998 he headed the photographic atelier of the Arts Institute of the J.E.Purkyneˇ University in Ústí nad Labem. He is a member of the state examination board at FAMU and at the FUUD of the J.E.Purkyneˇ University, as well as of the administrative boards of the Czech Association of Professional Photographers and the Mánes Arts Club. In 2003 he received a prestigious QEP quality certificate from the Federation of European Professional Photographers in the field of food photography.
His interest in independent photography is divided between two themes: in the area of documentary photography he concentrates on the sociological problems surrounding sports at the highest level (the "Sparta" and "Spartakiáda" cycles) and the problem of the unique Tibetan culture devastated by Chinese occupation. He participated in two photographic workshops at the Kladno Mines and Poldi Steel. His documentary collection "America" arose out of residences in Houston and New York in the framework of Photofest 1990.
Lhoták's subjective documentary from his most recent Asian travels diverge from classical photo-reporting. The value of the colour images from Nepal entitled "UNITED COLORS OF NEPAL" is more on the level of the emotional than the descriptive; the wildly hued compositions of the expressive detail of Hindu and Buddhist temples act through their purity of symbolism to reflect exotic cultures.
In artistic photography Zdeněk Lhoták concentrates on the human body. In his as-yet-unfinished cycle "Self portrait", he has since 1989 considered in ever simpler form the details of his own body, shifting from monochrome to colour scales. Within the framework of this cycle he has recently installed photographs of life-size figures attached to sheet metal in real interiors. In 2002, in collaboration with the artist Jiří Sozanský, a collection of computer-enhanced montages was created entitled "Signs of Power - in honour of Jan Zahradníček".