Photographer mapped shortcuts above Bratislava’s Old Town

Anton Sládek photographed paths and staircases connecting the streets above Palisády Street.

Kuzmányho StreetKuzmányho Street (Source: Courtesy of Anton Sládek)

As a small boy, photographer Anton Sládek lived on Lermontovova Street in Bratislava’s Old Town. His father, an assistant at the University of Economics, once took him to his office on Palisády Street, via a shortcut from Vlčkova Street up the stairs to Marótyho Street.

SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement
SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement

“It left a magical impression on me,” recalled the photographer to The Slovak Spectator.

These shortcuts, with more in this part of the city, fascinate Sládek to this day. He has made them the subject of his latest photo book, entitled Skratky (Shortcuts), while dedicating the book itself to his father.

“They weren’t normal sidewalks, but like something secret that not everyone knew about,” said Sládek.

At that time, in the 1960s and 1970s, there were significantly fewer houses in this area than today. There were mainly gardens where people grew fruits and vegetables. As a small boy, Sládek wandered with his friends along the sidewalks leading between them. Later they used these paths when wandering from one local pub to another.

“I have had these shortcuts stuck somewhere in the back of my head,” said the photographer.

During the Covid-19 pandemic he resolved to systematically map them. Every day he set off with a tripod under his arm with the aim of creating a complete documentary of a chosen shortcut or path.

The result is a book of black-and-white photographs, which in 16 chapters maps the streets of the so-called Upper City, the area above Palisády Street. The author supplemented the book with hand-drawn maps.

The rest of this article is premium content at
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on and

Top stories

Turkish pedagogy student Müge Altincinar in Trnava.

Language barrier limits Slovaks’ hospitality, foreign students say

Universities yet to tackle obstacles to the Erasmus programme.

6. feb
Speaker of Parliament Boris Kollar and his deputy Peter Pcolinsky of Sme Rodina share a laugh after the parliament approved the end of its term on September 30.

Elections are coming, but only after a long parliamentary free-for-all

2023 will be a campaigning year in Slovakia. What does that mean?

22 h
We are likely to perceive some animals as more charismatic than others and we may not even know why.

Some animals appear charismatic to us without knowing why

Slovak scientists focused on the bias in animal protection.

4. feb
SkryťClose ad