12 Star Gallery at Europe House in London will host photographs of Poland by the British artist Gerald Howson. The exhibition will be on display from 27th May until 13th June and is organized by the Polish Cultural Institute in London.
When he arrived in Poland for a photo assignment in 1959, Gerald Howson was working for the Queen magazine. He was supposed to provide photographic illustrations to an article about cold-war Poland. In the collection of over 60 black-and-white photographs, the focus is on showing people's everyday lives in the People's Republic of Poland in 1959. The British painter, photographer and historian travelled to Krakow, Nowa Huta, Lublin and finally to Warsaw in order to capture these images. Though not speaking a word of Polish, he was quite undaunted and came close to people he photographed.
While Howson’s collection was extensive, only a portion of it has ever been seen. A few of the hundreds of photographs were published in The Daily Telegraph, a British newspaper. Other images from his archive were presented at the Centre for Jewish Culture in Kraków and at Grodzka Gate Theatre in Lublin.
The exhibition has been awarded the Honorary Patronage of the Polish Ambassador to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Witold Sobków, and will be on display at 12 Star Gallery, Europe House from 27th May to 13th June.
The exhibition is curated by Bogdan Frymorgen. A former associate of the BBC World Service, Frymorgen has taken care of Howson’s archive since 2008.