On the one hand, artistic life in Poland after 2000 is characterized by significant revival, expressed in the large number of participants and the numerous events organized, and on the other - by a weak though growing public interest.
On the one hand, artistic life in Poland after 2000 is characterized by significant revival, expressed in the large number of participants and the numerous events organized, and on the other - by a weak though growing public interest. Though it represents high artistic quality and takes part actively in Polish reality, art is plagued by a lack of intellectuals entering into dialogue with it. It is troubled by a kind of alienation, despite a great though unfulfilled desire for social impact.
It is a unique feature of the reception of art in Poland that mainly young people have time for it. That is why initially, apart from specialist periodicals, art appeared in magazines devoted to popular culture. In the 1990's, it was featured in "Machina", "Fluid" and, after 2000, in "Przekrój" when it was still published in Kraków. This category of periodicals thus included articles by respected critics such as Łukasz Gorczyca, Andrzej Przywara and Piotr Rypson. The language of the critics became considerably simplified. A new generation of writers appeared, and collaborating with colour magazines signified breaking with tradition and following the spirit of the times. The language of criticism in the 1990's was cleared of the ballast of "sophistication" in the manner of Zeszyty Literackie – the previous authority on good taste. These changes were also influenced by academic workers, primarily the influential school of Poznań's art history department gathered around Piotr Piotrowski, involved in analysing art that dealt with issues of power and the body as well as cultural embodiments of gender. A major role in promoting the new school of writing was also fulfilled by Warsaw's "Raster"1 and Gdańsk's "Magazyn Sztuki"2.
The new decade brought change. The discussion moved once again to periodicals specializing in artistic issues. Utility writing, attractive maybe to inexperienced readers or those feeling bored with intellectual digressions, but trivializing the problems discussed, and also academic writing inspired by deconstructivism, Marxism and post-structuralism, did not lead to a pluralism of views and styles of criticism in Poland. Many topics, initiatives and artists remained "invisible", on the margin of the critics' sphere of interest. All this caused a temporary stagnation that was overcome thanks to the Internet. The pioneer of this new medium was fototapeta, which moved to the web as early as 1997. "Raster" was also among the first web magazines, starting its Internet version from 2000. Others followed suit, to mention "artmix" in 2001 – a magazine dealing with art and feminism. "Magazyn Sztuki" moved to the web as well, but to set up a kind of database, an archive of texts and not a new, regularly published magazine. The portal spam.art.pl was started in 2004, run by Łukasz Guzek, and "Obieg" was revived, its main communication platform also being the web. The new website www.bunkier.com.pl of Bunkier Sztuki, which features an art magazine, has been active since 2003. Of course the essence of the Internet "revolution" lay in the fact that the costs and tiresome problems of publishing a magazine were minimized. The editors' rapid reaction to events, the ease of conducting polemics, meant that paper magazines popular in the previous decade, such as "Exit" and "Format", lost their importance. Out of the printed magazines, the most popular and most often commented include "Obieg", "Piktogram" which promotes itself as elite, and also "Arteon" which is addressed to a broader public. "Czas Kultury", rejuvenated by Marek Wasilewski and offering a cultural and anthropological studies formula, is gaining popularity. Today's revival of art criticism is largely due, however, to the reactivation of Obieg. Published by Ujazdowski Castle, in its web version www.obieg.pl the magazine fulfils the role of a discussion initiator. The diversity of materials, authors, styles of writing and interpretation, discussions on topics important to art, without avoiding trouble spots, without fear of dispute – credit for all this is due to the editors, Grzegorz Borkowski and Adam Mazur. The main issues they focus on are definitely a redefinition of the Polish avant-garde tradition, the commitment and political involvement of art, and ethical questions.
One very new trend, from the past two or three years, are blogs written by critics. This trend serves to strengthen their position. Blogs primarily show the personality of their writers, who were hidden behind their texts before; the blogs supplement these texts with less official stances, more risky views, and allow for rapid transfer of information. Blog-writing critics include Piotr Bernatowicz and Iza Kowalczyk3.
Art in Poland is struggling with its typical alienation, additionally exacerbated by the violent changes in culture as it moves towards a neo-liberal model4, and by Polish tradition in which the elite's mistrust of visual arts is a deeply rooted trend5. The media in Poland are able to effectively attack art by treating its post-avant-garde, modern version as an excuse for sensation-seeking. This immature way of perceiving art causes huge social harm. On the other hand, the media can promote artists, and one example of this that has received a lot of publicity in Poland is the award called "Polityka's Passport"6. Incidentally, awards for artists are a rarity in Poland, we do not have a major award able to unequivocally select new important artists, such as the Chalupecky Award in the Czech Republic and the Oskar Čepan Award in Slovakia.
A shadow was cast over art in Poland after 2000 by the case of Dorota Nieznalska, accused in 2002 of "offending religious feelings" in her work Pasja / Passion (a crime under Article 196 of the Penal Code). With their mistrust of modern art, the liberal elites faced a dilemma that actually wonderfully highlighted their lack of consistency: how to defend the freedom of expression of a "thing" – a work of the latest art which they despised? The course matters took is known, the artist was convicted in a court trial, and an appeal has been filed. Educated and open-minded circles in Poland view the Nieznalska affair as a scandal, but even so they were incapable of unwaveringly defending the freedom of expression, unaware of the long-term consequences of art being manipulated for political aims. This case was not the only example of political or moral censoring of art in Poland. Society's mental immaturity and instability, picked up and skilfully exploited by politicians as well as the media, leads to some acts of censorship of artistic events that are supported by over-zealous forces of law and order. Gallery managers and curators have also displayed self-censorship on occasion, chiefly concerning art that violates moral taboos and touches on issues related to the Catholic Church and the Christian faith. Examples of censorship are collected by the portal spam.art.pl for example, while the Polish Section of the AICA set up a team in 2004 to deal with the matter. The Polish art community is divided and helpless in the face of this problem, or rather series of problems. The factors involved include Polish law, the political neutrality of a large part of the art community, and also the issue of public institutions' responsibility for their own programmes. The discussions held in our country around the question "Is there an ongoing cultural war in Poland?"7 have never been unequivocally resolved.
In the current decade, one can notice a continuation of the process started by the political breakthrough of 1989. Exhibitions are becoming part of the entertainment industry. However, there seems to be no well-thought-out strategy of founding bodies towards the galleries or museums they run, though there are some signs of thinking in terms of creating and supporting a local point of view. These attempts are initiated from the inside, by the employees of the institutions in question, and examples include the new Gallery of 20th-Century Polish Art at the National Museum in Kraków (2006) – the work of Marek Świca, completed after over 10 years, or a similar collection at the National Museum in Poznań, its curator being Włodzimierz Nowaczyk (2001). The institutions are changing the way in which they create their own programmes. Elements of thinking in terms of marketing are coming to the fore. At the same time, the awareness is returning that success is only possible with a good programme in artistic terms, not one based on easy and cheap exhibitions imported from outside ("package exhibitions").
On the subject of institutional life at the start of the 21st century, it has not gone through any great changes. There are no new public institutions8, a few new commercial galleries have emerged, including two that stand out and practically play the important role that should belong to the incompetent public galleries: Grażyna Kulczyk's Stary Browar in Poznan, and Atlas Sztuki in Łódź ambitious though offering a very erratic programme. One non-commercial facility with the ambition of being an art centre has been established as well, thanks to many years of commitment and passion on the part of Aneta Szyłak and Grzegorz Klaman – the Wyspa Institute of Art9. I will not go on about the problems with filling managerial posts, as in Poland this has little to do with a serious evaluation of a candidate's knowledge and competence, but I will just mention the change of director at the Museum of Art in Łódź. The new director, chosen in a competition, is Jarosław Suchan (2006). The change, forced by the Ministry, will be good for this once famous centre that completely lost importance over the previous and a large part of the present decade.
As for the opinion-forming power of artistic circles, in the sense of granting importance Polish art is no longer ruled by the "integrated circuit of Polish art", as Łukasz Gorczyca and Michał Kaczyński wanted to see it in the 1990's10, nor by a "triangle" or "quadrangle", as Jarosław Suchan saw it, the base formed by Warsaw institutions, both public and private: CCA Ujazdowski Castle, Zachęta, Foksal Gallery Foundation and perhaps Raster11. Now that Raster has crossed over to the market for good, when Zacheta has lost its importance, not taking part actively in the major discussions of artistic life, when Ujazdowski Castle failed in its attempt to regain its strong position by organizing the "Year of Poland" in Poland (namely last year's cycle "At the Very Centre of Attention"), only the Foksal Gallery Foundation is left on the battlefield. It does seem, though, that we are currently going through a time of redefinition that will select new opinion-forming centres.
The appearance of the curator is a characteristic feature of artistic life in recent years. Together with curators came a new philosophy of practising this profession. A curator is a specialist and also someone who assumes part of the artist's aura. During the present decade, curators have become the main players in art. The Polish specificity means, however, that curators depend on institutions and their rather modest means. A number of freelancers have also appeared, but their activity in the Polish reality is even more limited. Those who are freelancers in a way include Aneta Szyłak, who created the Wyspa Institute of Art from scratch12, Roman Lewandowski, who is interested in the heritage of modernist art13, and at one point Joanna Turowicz was also one, specializing in shows by artists who identified with feminism14. It is also worth mentioning the young curator duo of Dominik Kuryłek and Ewa Tatar, who carried out the "Przewodnik / Guide" project at the National Museum in Kraków (2006-2007), and also the activity of artist-curator Roman Dziadkiewicz, who has recently carried out projects not so much community-oriented as hermetic and autobiographical. It is also worth mentioning Kazimierz Piotrowski, the author of widely discussed exhibitions that highlighted some fundamental problems for Polish mentality and social life from an independent point of view (including "Irreligia" and "Inc. Sztuka wobec korporacyjnego przejmowania miejsc publicznej ekspresji" / "Inc. Art In the Face of Corporate Takeover of Public Expression"). The year 2005 saw the inauguration of Poland's first university course for future curators – at Jagiellonian University.
In 2000 we were still thinking in terms of the end of history. No breakthrough came, neither in the world nor in Poland. However, something happened in the following year that completely changed our image of the world – 11 September 2001. The terrorist attack had an extraordinary impact not only on the global sense of security, but also on the nature of culture. Things aesthetic began revealing a political side that disturbed the image. In Poland, these changes have been accompanied by others: the content behind seemingly pure form can be linked to unaccepted remembrance, a historical trauma that deforms memories, uncomfortable but not allowing itself to be manifested.
Art entered the decade after 2000 richer by many experiences. This was primarily the experience of abandoning the tradition of jingoistic and religious sources of art, which came about during the 1990's. At the time, Maria Janion wrote of the end of the Romantic paradigm in Polish culture. Art of the young generation rapidly shed any metaphysical sanction, reducing itself to what was visible on the surface. This change was the result of contact with popular culture, consumer culture, the free market of media and a quickly accelerating lifestyle, where what counts is a capacity for mobilization rather than time for contemplation or celebrating the community. Poland underwent modernization, forging its own formula for democracy in political disputes and social unrest. Art of the previous decade had initially been dominated by issues of ecology, archaeology of memory, and later – the body and power. The mid-1990's witnessed the development of critical art, namely art that analysed the subject in terms of its susceptibility to manipulation from those in power, art that followed their oppressive influence on the individual in a society experiencing shocks and redefining itself. Thus, this art was concerned – as we can see today – with the dilemmas linked to the introduction of capitalism, it stood up for those who were excluded...15 Representatives of critical art never worked closely together, and I do not think they were aware of being a formation. Even so, the list of artists mentioned in this context was always the same and comprised a small group, including Paweł Althamer, Grzegorz Klaman, Katarzyna Kozyra, Zbigniew Libera, Robert Rumas, Alicja Żebrowska, Artur Żmijewski. It was these artists who were able to give the fullest expression to the dilemmas of Polish reality and who "rule" the Polish scene to this day, and in many cases are also successful abroad. To the numerous analyses already devoted to them, I would just like to add that critical art introduced a new formula of the artist's participation in the world, regardless of whether this was a world arranged specially for the needs of an artistic experiment, or the "real" world in which the artists immersed themselves, it was a model of participation from the inside, shared experience, testing things personally. This model carries a problem however, one that is familiar to anthropologists: it is ambiguous, it assumes simultaneous participation and observation, a playing of two roles.
Over the next decade, critical art, largely identified with art that deals with the body, lost interest in this theme. It is hard to find a common denominator for today's activity of its artists. Each of them went his or her own way: Klaman turned to the problem of nationalisms and analyses of artistic institutions, collections, museums; Libera identified pop-culture clichés in the collective awareness, a kind of shared space of the collective imagination and images generated by the media, memory filtered through popular culture; Kozyra found fascinating ways of dealing with cultural clues, the tradition of beauty, the role of the artist, at the same time entering a field previously closed to her – opera and theatre; Althamer meanwhile, in a way absolutely devoid of sentimentalism, turned to art as a social experience, art as building a sense of community, adding anti-institutional reflections to this as well. Only Robert Rumas and Artur Żmijewski seemed to remain true to the values of critical art. Rumas is a consistent outsider in his activities, he looks at the state of our democracy without any delusions16. Żmijewski on the other hand, dealing with remembrance and the oppressiveness of the authorities, which individuals accept and consent to as being inevitable, appeals for art that would have the power to cause conflicts and the competence to "study" social behaviours. Żmijewski's work has given rise to many comments and polemics in recent years, the most important being Paweł Leszkowicz's. This critic accuses the artist of creating non-humanitarian and immoral art, of not respecting human rights. The discussion is in fact an attempt at summing up the achievements of critical art.
The start of the present decade brought a culmination of the fashion for female artists. This was the first time in Polish history that there were so many of them and they were so prominent. Of course they do not comprise any formation just because of their gender, I am far from seeking common factors of their work in general. However, to a certain degree, their activity fulfilled a role similar to that of critical art. They showed those things in the new reality that had previously been excluded from it, invisible, or allowed only on the fringes. Women's art accompanied the maturing of women's emancipation discourse in Poland. It offered a commentary to it, for example Pawel Leszkowicz interpreted Alicja Żebrowska's Grzech Pierworodny – Domniemany Projekt Rzeczywistosci Wirtualnej / Original Sin – The Presumed Project of Virtual Reality in relation to the conflict over the anti-abortion law of 199317. Today, in the second half of the decade, female artists are seldom distinguished just for speaking with "their own" voice, but their assimilation into the cultural mainstream could mark the start of a change in the social awareness towards a more liberal mindset.
The growing role of female artists, or at this time their completely equal position, leads us to consider the causes behind this trend. To name this phenomenon, there is a good expression borrowed from Piotr Gruszczyński – Ojcobójcy / Patricides18. Though his book is devoted to the new generation of theatre artists, female visual artists benefited from the "patricide" just as much as directors did. The "father" in all this is the dominating authority defining the values of art. After 1989, in fact, pluralism existed in this respect on the art scene. Female artists did not have to lean on anybody's authority to be noticed. Regardless of the institution involved, numerous exhibitions of female art, of various importance, official and independent, from "Kobiety o Kobiecie" / "Women on Woman", through Galeria Bielska (1996 and 2000), the "Biały Mazur" exhibition whose curator was Anda Rottenberg19, to the independent "Święto Kobiet" / "Women's Day", organized from 2004 by a duo called exgirls, confirmed that female artists who did not adjust their language to the "logocentric" model had entered mainstream culture. Another trend also became visible after 2000. Representatives of the youngest female generation have been using a set of feminist formulae as something existing and ready-made, selected from many possible options. Most often, they do not even admit to feminism. Some female artists of this generation use this language to tell their own, introvert story, without realizing how subversive it is, to mention Basia Bańda or Eliza Galey. Others, like Anna Okrasko or Anna Maria Kaczmarska, continue their emancipation campaign. Going back to the female artists who gained recognition earlier, they have consolidated their position. Zofia Kulik has become a master, Elżbieta Jabłońska received an award from Deutsche Bank in their first competition for the best young artist20, Julita Wójcik has had a retrospective exhibition at Białystok's Arsenal (2005) for example, Jadwiga Sawicka has exhibited at Zachęta and Bunkier Sztuki (2003)21. The transformation in the output of Elżbieta Jabłońska is worth special attention. Initially her works consisted in saturating modernist art forms with content usually excluded and marginalized, thus they involved a lot of privacy, motherhood, cooking, family. This was a game in which the artist assumed a role and maintained a distance both from herself and from the role of the artist as a creator. Jabłońska gradually expanded her activity to include successive marginalized groups, she became a "carer" to various people in need of help. The campaign Pomaganie / Helping assumed complete equality and freedom in relations between the artist-carer and the disadvantaged, which required the latter to want to accept the help they were being offered. She created a neon sign reading Czy twój umysł jest pełen dobroci? / Is your mind filled with kindness? in 2005 – and this is an excellent programme for art in general. Jabłońska's work contains a formula of humanitarianism, which is set to become – next to solidarity, a sense of community and the artist's place in it – a major issue in the Polish art of today. Reflecting on what changes the work of female artists is going through, it is worth mentioning one of the most famous artistic events of the past decade. In 2003, Zuzanna Janin staged her own funeral22. This happening, though it raised a lot of controversy over the limits of artistic activity, also shows participation in great narratives of art. Janin's project included such leitmotivs as obsession with death, grief and remembrance – the very themes that seem to delineate the main fields of artistic exploration in Poland in the second half of this decade.
An attempt to identify the change in artists' approach to reality was made in two exhibitions prepared by the curator team of Ewa Gorządek and Stach Szabłowski. "Scena 2000" / "Scene 2000"23 at Ujazdowski Castle, and two years later "Rzeczywiście, młodzi są realistami" / "Really, the Young Are Realists"24 placed the emphasis on artists' attitude towards reality, showed how artists were opening up to everyday things, to the experience of the ordinariness of life shared by all of us, both on the level of visual sensitivity and with respect to the problems covered.
The wave of summaries that these exhibitions triggered, or rather the sounding out of Polish art, continues to this day, but its form has changed. Today summaries serve as a benchmark for various institutions in creating collections, and are more of an attempted new look at tradition, at redefining the heritage of avant-garde and modernism. In this context, one can mention the great jubilee exhibition at Zacheta, "Uważaj, wychodząc z własnych snów możesz znaleźć się w cudzych" / "Be Careful Exiting Your Own Dreams – You May Find Yourself in Someone Else's", important among other things for the fact that its curator was Harald Szeemann25, which brought an unorthodox look at Polish tradition. The selection of works, made by the famous Swiss curator himself who knew little about Polish art before this, was refreshing due to its lack of historical perspective and some unusual juxtapositions (Althamer's self-portrait next to the self-portraits of Malczewski). This was not a surprising proposal, though, as it was based on the stereotype of Polish romanticism. A caricature of this was shown by Daniel Olbrychski when, at the same Zacheta, he took a sword and slashed the photos of Nazis selected and displayed by Piotr Uklański26.
Reviews of the history of the most recent art have been accomplished by numerous presentations of collections. These exhibitions were usually a consequence of the programme "Znaki Czasu" (Signs of the Times), initiated in 2004 by the minister of culture in the previous Polish government, Waldemar Dąbrowski. This programme, implemented in association with local governments, was of great benefit to local art communities. For the first time since 1989, the government had developed a project to consciously support and stimulate artistic life by creating collections and the museums to hold them. In the form to which they have been developed today, the collections mostly prove that the money invested in them has not been wasted. This programme, however, was also supposed to encourage cities to develop a network of museums on their own initiative, to take care of the above-mentioned collections. These ideas got stuck at the design stage. The most advanced project today is the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw.
When artists born in the 1970's debuted in the second half of the 1990's, a new field of exploration in art began to crystallize: everyday and banal life. This is well illustrated by the exhibition "Marzenie prowincjonalnej dziewczyny" / "The Dream of a Provincial Girl", organized by Julita Wójcik, Paulina Ołowska and Lucy McKenzie in a private flat in Sopot. The exhibition was held in 2000 and assumed the importance of the first clear manifestation of what was to become the trademark activity of this generation of artists27. This current was also dubbed "neo-banalism". The term however, devised among artists grouped in Lampa and Iskra Boża, and also Raster, was very broad and not very precisely defined. Raster promoted a lot of this kind of art, while the work of painters from the former Ładnie group or even Oskar Dawicki's group, seemed to stem from acceptance of ordinary daily life and modest means of expression. Neo-banalism encompassed art that seemed laconic, anti-metaphysical and was reduced to what was visible on the surface. Names to mention in this context include Agata Bogacka, Marcin Maciejowski and Zbigniew Rogalski. Though there was room in the new banalism for analyses of art institutions, the consumer lifestyle, the impact of media and advertising on the image of the world, in general it consisted in highlighting individuality and alienation.
Ironic art also developed at this time, dealing with the role of artists and their place in society. Never concealing its lack of faith in the importance of that role, this art focused on a mocking analysis of the mechanisms by which institutions and their officials functioned. The ironic approach was a speciality of groups. Boredom was certainly an important inspiration for them, but the groups Azorro28, Wunderteam29 and the duo Magisters30 also shared a similar character of activity that was not really fully artistic, consisting in circling "around art" but not in creating it. The popularity of these groups was due to the fact that they broke from the conviction, deeply rooted in Poland, that art had to be serious and sad, and that artists should not have fun. Wunderteam and Magisters in particular appeared in embarrassing situations, offering their response (albeit a timid one) to the Jackass phenomenon. Today however, one can observe that the ironic mockery model has become worn.
The opposite process seems to be more important and more widespread. Art stops being treated as a game or entertainment, and artists are taking it seriously again. In the present decade, irony is losing importance, and things that seemed trivial are revealing a different side. Hence, Oskar Dawicki turns out to be not just a lampoonist but a deeply tragic artist as well31, struggling with a sense of existential void, while the paintings of Agata Bogacka reveal autobiographical, depressive content33.
Recent years have been a great return to history and remembrance. History always existed in Poland as an important reference point for artistic activity – history understood as the effect of social experiences that had shaped the collective subconscious and did not necessarily manifest themselves directly. After a time of being ignored in the 1990's, history began regaining its importance thanks to the work of several circles. One of them had in fact always displayed an interest in history – this was the group of Grzegorz Klaman and Gdansk's Wyspa. It was there that Aneta Szyłak held the exhibitions "BHP" / "Health & Safety"33 and "Strażnicy Doków" / "Guards of the Docks"34, of which the latter in particular touched directly on issues of "cultural memory, its aberrations, repetitions and relocations"35. Another group gathered around Foksal Gallery and FGF. Lively memories of the heritage of their co-founders and masters, such as Tadeusz Kantor, Henryk Stażewski and Oskar Hansen, its constant redefining in the context of the present day, lends a broader perspective to FGF's proposals. Mirosław Bałka should also be mentioned here, whose art only started being interpreted in the context of denial of the memory of the Holocaust when the artist began making his minimalist films at Auschwitz. Rafał Jakubowicz also worked on similar problems. It is impossible not to mention Robert Kuśmirowski and his constant do-it-yourself knocking together and re-creating, or rather creating of replicas of history. Often, the subject of history and remembrance is discovered in works that were never interpreted in this way before. This was the case with Jadwiga Sawicka. The exhibition "Problemy z pamięcią" / "Memory Problems"36 uncovered a whole new layer of meaning in her work, especially since Sawicka's pictures and text installations were set next to a documentary by Joan Grossman. Just how history is distorted, and how media influence its image, was shown by Zbigniew Libera in his widely discussed work Co robi łączniczka / What a Female Liaison Does37.
An interest in history is also present in exhibitions that revive forgotten periods of art and underestimated artists in new interpretations. There are still many blank spots and places that are passed over in the history of Polish art. This current is represented by the exhibitions of Ewa Partum, organized by Aneta Szyłak in Gdansk and by Dorota Monkiewicz in Warsaw38. Also worth mentioning here is the work of Łukasz Ronduda from Warsaw's Centre for Contemporary Art (CSW), reviving the Polish neo-avant-garde39, but also exhibitions devoted to Andrzej Szewczyk40 or Andrzej Pawłowski – with a monumental catalogue41.
Art in Poland is haunted by myths of revolution and consumerism. "Revolution" is artists' desire to be politically committed and to actively influence the social reality, while "consumerism" is dreaming about a decent standard of living and about success. This blend of contradictions, though it seems typical for late capitalism, in Poland is more likely the result of the experience of living in People's Poland, in isolation. This makes the two myths only seemingly contradictory. They show a certain complex that is often reflected in art, a sense of being different that stems from the Polish or Eastern European experience being different. It looks as if art has now become capable of expressing the otherness of our place, taking advantage of the significance of our experience, melding it into one whole with current forms of artistic expression.
Author: Magdalena Ujma.
- Established in 1995.
- Established in 1995.
- These blogs and many more can be found on www.obieg.pl
- It is typical for this system that there is a deadlock between thinking about art as an area of social activity and shutting it away in galleries. There is a silent acceptance of the fact that the social impact of art is a "fairy tale".
- One recurrent motif in discussions after 2000 was the question of why the Polish intelligentsia was so dismissive about contemporary art, see e.g. the questionnaire in "Kresy" quarterly: Magdalena Ujma, "Dlaczego polscy intelektualiści nie lubią sztuki współczesnej? Próba diagnozy stanu rzeczy", "Kresy", No. 4 (56) 2003, Piotr Bernatowicz, entries in the blog "Notes krytyka": piotrbernatowicz.blox.pl.
- In existence since 1993.
- "Zeszyty Artystyczne", Academy of Fine Arts (ASP) in Poznan, June 2004. It includes materials from the discussion of this very question at the Poznan ASP held in January 2004.
- At present the mayor of Katowice is supporting the Rondo Sztuki project in the city.
- In existence since 2004.
- "Raster", No. 6, 1998.
- "Kilka osób umówi się co należy do kanonu i załatwione. Jarosław Suchan is interviewed by Piotr Kosiewski and Magdalena Ujma", "Kresy", No. 1-2/2001.
- Set up by the Wyspa Progress Foundation.
- Including "Forma jest pustką – pustka jest formą", 2006: Schindler Factory in Kraków; Sektor I Gallery in Katowice; 2007: Academy of Fine Arts Gallery in Bielsko-Biała; Baltic Art Gallery, Słupsk.
- Including Anna Baumgart and Birgit Brenner, "Kolekcja wstydliwych gestów", Zachęta, Warsaw 2004; Aleksandra Polisiewicz, "Bestiarium podświadomości", Kronika, Bytom 2004.
- At this point I have to admit a change in my views compared to my text.
- Artur Żmijewski, "SSS", "Krytyka Polityczna"
- Żebrowska's work was created in 1994, Paweł Leszkowicz, http://free.art.pl/artmix, April - August 2001.
- Piotr Gruszczyński, "Ojcobójcy. Młodsi zdolniejsi w teatrze polskim", Warsaw 2003.
- "Biały Mazur", Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin, 2003; Bunkier Sztuki, Kraków, 2004, curator: Anda Rottenberg, featuring: Bogna Burska, Marta Deskur, Katarzyna Górna, Elżbieta Jabłońska, Dorota Nieznalska, Joanna Rajkowska, Jadwiga Sawicka, Julita Wójcik, Monika Mamzeta.
- "Spojrzenia" Deutsche Bank Competition, 1st edition, 2004.
- Jadwiga Sawicka, "Nic w srodku", curator: Bożena Gajewska, Bunkier Sztuki, Kraków, 2003.
- Zuzanna Janina, "Widziałam swoją śmierć", 2003.
- "Scena 2000" / "Scene 2000", featuring: Paweł Althamer, Mirosław Bałka, Anna Baumgart, Marcin Berdyszak, Rafał Bujnowski, Hubert Czerepok, Marta Deskur, Jarosław Fliciński, Maurycy Gomulicki, Zuzanna Janin, Kijewski/Kocur, Anna Konik, Michał Kopaniszyn, Jarosław Kozakiewicz, Katarzyna Kozyra, Konrad Kuzyszyn, Dominik Lejman, Zbigniew Libera, Marcin Maciejowski, Robert Maciejuk, Dorota Nieznalska, Joanna Rajkowska, Zbigniew Rogalski, Marek Rogulski, Robert Rumas, Iwo Rutkiewicz, Wilhelm Sasnal, Jadwiga Sawicka, Grzegorz Sztwiertnia, Agnieszka Tarasiuk, Piotr Wyrzykowski, Wojciech Zasadni, Artur Żmijewski and Magisters group.
- Paweł Althamer, Anna Baumagart, Cezary Bodzianowski, Agata Bogacka, Agnieszka Brzeżańska, Maurycy Gomulicki, Magisters group, Marcin Foryś, Paweł Janas, Agnieszka Kalinowska, Paweł Kruk, Maciej Krygier, Marcin Maciejowski, Anna Niesterowicz, Paulina Ołowska & Lucy McKenzie, Piotr Parda, Joanna Rajkowska, Iwo Rutkiewicz, Julita Wójcik, Wojciech Zasadni and Maciej Kostro, curators: Ewa Gorządek and Stach Szabłowski, CCA, Warsaw.
- "Uważaj, wychodząc z własnych snów możesz znaleźć się w cudzych, Zachęta, Warsaw, 2000-2001, curator: Harald Szeemann.
- Piotr Uklański, "Naziści", curator Adam Szymczyk, Zacheta, 2000. Szeemann's exhibition became famous in Poland due to another scandal, when parliamentary deputies interfered with Maurizio Cattelan's sculpture of John Paul II (La Nona Ora, 1999).
- Polish participants in the exhibition also included Rafał Bujnowski.
- Active since 2001, the group includes: Oskar Dawicki, Igor Krenz, Wojciech Niedzielko and Łukasz Skapski.
- Active since 2004, the group includes: Wojciech Duda, Rafał Jakubowicz, Paweł Kaszczyński, Maciej Kurak.
- Founded in 2000, and included Hubert Czerepok and Zbigniew Rogalski.
- As shown by the exhibitions at Bunkier Sztuki and CSW: "Dziesieciolecie malarstwa", Bunkier Sztuki, Kraków 2005; "W samym centrum uwagi. Odsłona 2", CCA Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw 2005-2006.
- Agata Bogacka, "Serce", Raster, Warsaw 2006.
- Wyspa Institute of Art, Gdansk, 2004, curator: Aneta Szyłak.
- Fanny Adler, Cecile Paris, Rene Lueck, Zbigniew Libera, Elżbieta Jabłońska, Grzegorz Klaman, Jacek Niegoda, Marek Sobczyk, Jadwiga Sawicka, Andrzej Syska, Michał Szlaga, Ania and Adam Witkowski, Alina Żemojdzin. Wyspa Institute of Art, Gdansk, 2005, curator: Aneta Szyłak.
- For more about the exhibition, visit www.wyspa.art.pl
- Together with Joan Grossman. "Kłopoty z pamięcią, Zachęta, Warsaw 2002.
- With Darek Foks.
- Ewa Partum, "Legalność przestrzeni", Instytut Sztuki Wyspa, Gdansk 2006, curator: Aneta Szyłak; Ewa Partum, "Samoidentyfikacja", Królikarnia, Warsaw 2006, curator: Dorota Monkiewicz.
- Including "1,2,3... Awangarda", CCA Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw 2006-2007, curators: Łukasz Ronduda, Florian Zeyfang.
- "Niosę przed sobą lustro. Hommage a Andrzej Szewczyk", Sektor I Gallery, Katowice 2004; Szara Gallery, Cieszyn, 2004, curators: Roman Lewandowski and Joanna Wowrzeczka.
- "Andrzej Pawłowski 1925-1986", BWA Gallery in Katowice, National Museum in Wroclaw, Bunkier Sztuki, Kraków (2002).