Design for Freedom - Freedom in Design presents the works of graphic designers from 1981 up through the youngest generation of artists. The showcase at Berlin's Made My Day Gallery surveys the evolution of graphic art from the rise of independence through today.
Polish graphic artists underwent many transformations within recent Polish history. Their roles were characterised by paradoxes: anarchy and conformity, individualism and sameness of style, rationalism and romanticism. Reacting to dynamically changing norms and the instability of various political-economic systems in Poland over the last 30 years, designers produced a whole spectrum of attitudes and styles, in accordance with the changing times.
The survey of works in the exhibition form a narrative about the changes in living standards, aspirations, priorities, codes and ways of perceiving reality in past and present-day Poland and how these influenced Polish visual arts. It illustrates the power of design as a tool for addressing national issues through visual media with references to politics, economics and society. Symbolism and hidden social critiques are communicated through the language of pictures, signs and numerous other aesthetics. In their own way, they became the quiet but pointed emblems of protest within a political battle of opposing ideologies - as well as one of the few forms of escape and means of self-expression.
The initiative also presents original projects made on-site and displayed at the exhibition, along with a series of workshops and meetings with artists belonging to the Association of Graphic Designers as well as presentations and lectures by design critics and historians, such as: Grzegorz Laszuk, Jakub "Hakobo" Stępień, Fajne Chłopaki group, Krecha group, Małgorzata Gurowska, Agata Nowotny, Piotr Rypson, Michael Okraj, Michał Warda, Agata Szydłowska and Lex Drewiński.
The Association of Graphic Designers (STGU) is the only Polish professional organisation with a focus on graphic design. Since 2004 the association has led many activities based on independent design projects, the promotion of designer's rights, and in raising the prestige of graphic design. The organisation aims to be a centre of experience and exchange in developing the contemporary concept of a graphic designer.
The organisation consists of 200 of the most interesting Polish artists and graphic designers in Poland, representing different generations, Polish regions and various fields of graphic design. STGU works in collaboration with the most important Polish institutions, firms and design media.
The exhibition opens on the 28th of August with a concert and meeting with critics and art historians. Several special events follow throughout the duration of the exhibition:
BeebooLa - Bibuła - Piotr Rypson
Battle and Opposition Strategies in Polish Graphic Design: From Solidarity to Radical Creative Action
Practical-Technical Workshops - Robert Jarosz
Freedom in Design - Social Analysis - Agata Nowrotny
Design for Freedom, Freedom in Design - Michał Warda
Presentation and discussion - Grzegorz Laszuk, Jakub Stępień Hakobo, Lex Drewiński
Grzegorz Laszuk, Jakub Stępień - Workshops - 25.08 - 31.08
Fajne Chłopaki Artistic Group & Pan tu nie stał - 25.08 - 30.08
Krecha Artistic Group - 02.09 - 11.09
Małgorzata Gurowska - 02.09 -11.09
Berlin's Made My Day Gallery (formerly Undplus) is devoted to a wide survey of visual arts and design across graphic arts, photography, fashion and other disciplines.
Exhibition Curator: Marcin Rene Wawrzkiewicz
Venue: Made My Day Gallery, Torstrasse 66, Mitte
Organiser: The Association of Graphic Designers (STGU)
Project cofinanced by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland
Source: Adam Mickiewicz Institute