The winners of the latest, 17th edition of the "Polityka" Passports have been announced. Awards in all six categories: film, literature, visual arts, classical music and pop-music, were presented during a grand gala at the Teatr Wielki in Warsaw...
The award presentation gala, source: www.polityka.plOn January 12, 2010, during the gala at the Grand Theatre in Warsaw, the cultural awards of "Polityka" monthly have been given for the 17th time already. The so-called Passports awards have been presented by the Polityka's journalists along with the winners of the last year's edition.
It was a good year for Polish culture. For the first time the jury decided to give two ex aequo awards: the announcement of the joint winners in film category only reaffirmed the widely circulating opinion, calling 2009 a very good year for Polish cinema. This turned out also true for the box office, as Snow White and Russian Red and Reverse had successfully competed with American blockbusters.
List of "Polityka" Passport winners 2009:
Film: Borys Lankosz - joint award with Xawery Żuławski.
- Borys Lankosz - awarded for his movie Reverse, one of the best debut films in the last years. For opening a new perspective on Polish history - without pathos or simplification. For the refinement and sophisticated humor as well as great co-operation with actors.
- Xawery Żuławski - awarded for Snow White and Russian Red, an original and surprising adaptation which at the same time remains faithful to the original; a work of formal virtuosity, intelligent, funny, and encouraging reflection.
- Sandra Korzeniak - for her impersonation of Marilyn Monroe in Krystian Lupa's Persona. Triptych/Marilyn in Teatr Dramatyczny, in Warsaw. Award for a part that re-establishes what is true and false in terms of acting.
- Piotr Paziński - awarded for his debut novel Pensjonat, a beautiful, poetical book reviving a world that is irretrievably gone. For a debut that is convincing and suggestive of how powerful and interesting can be the voice of the thrid generation after Holocaust.
- Karol Radziszewski - for audacity and innovation in presenting art at the exhibition "Siusiu w torcik / To Pee in a Bun" at Zachęta, Warsaw. For his interesting quest in art, diverse accomplishments, and consistency in whatever he undertakes.
- Barbara Wysocka - for her staging of Philip Glass's The Fall of the House of Usher at the National Opera. For a brilliant debut as director, suggestive of her ability to see music and hear theatre.
- L.U.C. - Łukasz Rostkowski - for his 39/89 Zrozumieć Polskę / Understanding Poland album. For intelectual and artistic effort of understanding Poland without ideological props.
Paweł Althamer at the gala, source: www.polityka.plSpecial award for the Creator of Culture
- Paweł Althamer - in acknowledgement of his persistent and constant attempt at proving that art is happening everywhere and all the time. For incorporating into art new areas and attracting towards it people who had never thought themselves to be artists. For the surprising, provocative attitude that induces reflection and combats social stereotypes; and lastly, for reminding us that art is not only about beauty, but also about wisdom and common good.
In the following weeks, "Polityka" will gradually publish conversations with the winners.
The latest, 17th edition of the "Polityka" Passports - culture awards for young artists - has begun. The awards will be presented on 12 January 2010, during a grand gala at the Teatr Wielki in Warsaw.
The film nominations were the first to be announced. Since the Gdynia festival, it has often been said that 2009 was a truly unique year in Polish cinema's recent history. For the first time in years, film reviews - and the recommendations cited below - agree that Polish filmmakers are perfectly capable of making good films that are ambitious but also addressed to a wider audience.
In the visual arts, this was not a year of great discoveries or unexpected explosions of talent. Success came to those who had done well in the visual arts before. The huge number of galleries, art blogs, exhibitions, and ideas led to a great diversity of views on who deserved a "Polityka" Passport. Once again, art critics were extremely divided in their choices. As many as 21 artists were suggested, only six of them repeated from last year.
As for theatre, for the first time in the 17-year history of the "Polityka" Passports, three critics (men) submitted only female candidates, and women were mentioned in first place on a number of other nominee lists. This reflects reality: female playwrights, directors, actors, set designers, and costume designers, unassisted by gender parity, are making a strong presence in contemporary theatre and influencing its development.
Great Polish musicians are successful at home and abroad, and it can be hard to assess whose success is greater. This is the first time the same person has received a "Polityka" Passport nomination in two categories: theatre and music. The music nomination for Barbara Wysocka, just a few weeks after her truly excellent debut at the Polish National Opera, testifies to the community's longing for someone who can offer sensible and competent opera directing (and Wysocka, a musician by education, has the requisite qualities). Audiences are tired of the experiments of "barbarians in the garden" and are waiting for genuine art, for proof that opera doesn't need to be revived blindly, simply because it is still alive.
In recent years Polish popular music has been like a flickering music video. The old resisted the new, rock music refused to make way for hip-hop, new jazz competed against different variations of club music, and ethno mingled with pop. Last year's nominees included the band Pustki and L.U.C. (Łukasz Rostkowski). Pustki and L.U.C. are also among the nominees this year, alongside Gaba Kulka. Such a repeat has never happened before in the history of the "Polityka" Passports.
The same names have recurred in the literary nominations for several years - a sign that there aren't many new writers appearing. All the nominated books are short - novellas rather than novels. Speedy times seem to be dominated by stories that are not too long but which - like the nominated works - are good for reading over and over again.
The nominations were announced in successive weeks: film - November 9, visual arts - November 18, theatre - November 25, classical music - December 2, pop music - December 9, literature - December 16, 2009.
2009 SHORT-LISTED ARTISTS
LITERATURE FILM THEATRE VISUAL ARTS
CLASSICAL MUSIC POP MUSIC
Agnieszka Drotkiewicz - nomination for her third novel, Teraz ["Now"].
"Her style and literary way of writing is strengthening and gaining in distinctiveness. The life of the Warsaw-based 'girl of letters' living in poverty 'in the Kabaty wilderness' becomes the life of a hero of our times. This 'post-feminist revolution' girl-person, who also contains a Gombrowicz-like old-maidish undertone, painstakingly builds the edifice of her identity on the shifting sand of literature. The sum of these circumstances produces migraines, which in turn yield piercing vision and gallows humour." (Kazimiera Szczuka)
"In her third book, Drotkiewicz has finally found her own language, and in the meantime showed herself to be a talented writer of short forms (the anthologies 'Babskie gadanie' / 'Women's Talk', 'Dziewczyńskie bajki na dobranoc' / 'Girls' Bedtime Stories', 'Projekt mężczyzna' / 'The Man Project'). Though still very young, the older she gets, the better she is." (Marta Mizuro)
Jacek Dukaj - nominated for the fairy tale (?), horror story (?) Wroniec.
"To prevent historical reality from being appropriated by mundane historical politics, we need linguistically bold literature which pierces ideological phantasms and - as Gombrowicz used to say - breaks national codes with the coldest impertinence. In short: we need Dukaj's 'Wroniec'." (Grzegorz Jankowicz)
"No other literary career is developing so beautifully and so purely. Purely? Of course! Dukaj owes exclusively to himself the fact that he has become a star of what is still young literature. There was no media support involved. Both the impressive 'Lód' / 'Ice' and the surprising 'Wroniec' are major literary events, obligatory - I will be so bold as to say - reading." (Dariusz Nowacki)
Piotr Paziński - nominated for the novella Pensjonat ["The Boarding House"].
"Paziński has restored my faith that our generation hasn't completely lost its memory - or, to put it another way: that our memory hasn't turned into a pile of scratched photographic plates. 'Pensjonat' / 'The Boarding House' is a beautiful, lyrical, ironic and also bitter tale about decline, about searching for oneself, about a world that is irrevocably lost, and finally - about the loneliness of someone whom the world uproots from their past. This is European-class prose, reminiscent of W.G. Sebald's achievements." (Piotr Kofta)
"Paziński took the local train to his sanctuary: a Jewish boarding house in Śródborów where he used to stay as a child with his grandmother. 'Pensjonat' / 'The Boarding House' is a brilliantly written séance of a book which confirms the proven truth that communing with ghosts can be just as interesting as with living people." (Marek Zaleski)
For nominations were also taken into consideration:
Tadeusz Dąbrowski, Czarny kwadrat; Jerzy Franczak, Nieludzka komedia; Kamila Janiak, Kto zabił bambi?; Hubert Klimko-Dobrzaniecki, Rzeczy pierwsze; Grzegorz Kwiatkowski, Eine Kleine Todesmusik; Piotr Milewski, Szkice glanem; Włodzimierz Nowak, Serce narodu koło przystanku; Małgorzata Rejmer, Toksymia; Marcin Sendecki, 22; Juliusz Strachota, Cień pod blokiem Białoszewskiego; Marta Syrwid, Zaplecze; Radosław Wiśniewski, NeoNoe.
Following experts nominated the candidates: Paweł Dunin-Wąsowicz ("Lampa"), Grzegorz Jankowicz (Tygodnik Powszechny), Jarosław Klejnocki (Warsaw University), Piotr Kofta ("Dziennik"), Marta Mizuro (Odra), Anna Nasiłowska (Instytut Badań Literackich PAN), Dariusz Nowacki (Uniwersytet Śląski), Robert Ostaszewski ("Portal kryminalny", Dekada Literacka), Kazimiera Szczuka (Instytut Badań Literackich PAN), Marek Zaleski (Instytut Badań Literackich PAN)
Borys Lankosz - for restoring our faith that a Polish director can make what we call a film with aspirations (Rewers / Reverse).
"For the first time in several years at a cinema, I had the impression I was watching a film strongly rooted in the Polish School tradition, but also new and fresh, narrated in 21st-century language. Lankosz is not 'a new Wajda' or 'a new Kawalerowicz', for he speaks in a different voice, his own. How strong it is - we'll know in a few years. For now, this looks to me to be the debut of the decade." (Michał Chaciński)
"I vote for Lankosz - for restoring our faith that a Polish director can make what we call a film with aspirations which is also a pleasure to watch. Or maybe 'Reverse' is a film for watching which also has aspirations? It comes to the same thing." (Lech Kurpiewski)
"Making 'Reverse' - an exceedingly perverse, formally meticulous film about the cursed Polish fate - the debuting Lankosz has blazed the trail for many fellow filmmakers. Perhaps thanks to this film's great success, at least some of them will discover it's worth thinking for themselves." (Anita Piotrowska)
Marcin Koszałka - for co-creating the atmosphere of the film stories with his images (cinematography for Rewers / Reverse).
"As a maker of exhibitionistic documentaries, he shocks and disturbs. As a cameraman, he's a genius. He doesn't bend the film to his own visions and concepts. He co-creates the atmosphere of the film stories with his images." (Barbara Hollender)
"For years, he has been a regular contender in two contests alternately: as a sophisticated cameraman, an excellent partner of his director peers, and as the author of documentaries. In Gdynia his monochrome (but certainly not black/white) imagery of People's Poland contributed significantly to the success of 'Reverse'." (Tadeusz Lubelski)
"I vote for Marcin Koszałka, author of the elegant cinematography for 'Reverse' and a multitude of intriguing documentaries." (Małgorzata Sadowska)
Xawery Żuławski - for a combination of sophistication and pop which is unusual for Polish circumstances (Wojna polsko-ruska / Snow White and Russian Red).
"According to an old rule, promising debuting directors fail with their second film. With Xawery Żuławski it was the other way round: he wanted too much in his debut ('Chaos'), but his second project brought fulfilment. His 'Snow White and Russian Red' is an unexpected, intelligent, memorable film which is also irresistibly funny". (Tadeusz Lubelski)
"Adapting Dorota Masłowska's prose, which is deeply rooted in language, was quite a challenge. The director who could manage it had to have a personality as strong as the writer's. Żuławski not only knew how to transfer 'Snow White…' to the screen, but gave it his own distinct auteur handwriting". (Magdalena Michalska)
"A combination of sophistication and pop which is unusual for Polish circumstances. Żuławski found the film equivalent for Masłowska's language of mimicry. He deludes the audience with the singular charm of the degraded dresiarz [tracksuit-wearing urban thug] subculture, at the same time parodying it cruelly, uncovering the artificiality of the world he portrays. This is virtuoso cinema, colourful, funny, but also sad". (Tadeusz Sobolewski)
For nominations were also taken into consideration:Aleksandra Bednarz (for her role in the independent film Druciki / The Little Wires), Paweł Borowski (for the film Zero), Bartosz Konopka (for the documentary Królik po berlińsku / Rabbit à la Berlin), Piotr Marecki (for his books of interviews with Polish directors), Wojciech Pacyna (for the film Nigdy nie mów nigdy / Never Say Never), Katarzyna Rosłaniec (for the film Galerianki), Borys Szyc (for his leading roles in Wojna polsko-ruska / Snow White and Russian Red, Enen, and Handlarz cudów / Miracle Seller), Rafał Wieczyński (for the film Popiełuszko. Wolność jest w nas / Popiełuszko: Freedom Is Within Us), Adam Woronowicz (for his roles in 6 films, including the leading role in Popiełuszko).
Following experts nominated the candidates: Michał Chaciński (TVP Kultura), Barbara Hollender ("Rzeczpospolita"), Lech Kurpiewski ("Newsweek"), Tadeusz Lubelski (Uniwersytet Jagielloński), Magdalena Michalska ("Dziennik Gazeta Prawna"), Anita Piotrowska ("Tygodnik Powszechny"), Jerzy Płażewski ("Kino"), Jacek Rakowiecki ("Film"), Małgorzata Sadowska ("Przekrój"), Tadeusz Sobolewski ("Gazeta Wyborcza").
Michał Borczuch - for theatre that is ironic but very personal, confessional and provocative.
"Borczuch creates theatre that is ironic but very personal, confessional and provocative, casual and fervent; year by year, he works on increasingly difficult topics and is not afraid of the pathos, kitsch, and awkwardness that are hard to avoid in such cases." (Anna R. Burzyńska)
"He is a director who avoids great narratives and so-called important problems. He sticks with areas of everyday life, privacy, and this is where he uncovers the experiences of death, heartbreak, weakness, self-destruction; he takes care to maintain an ironic perspective, trusts ugliness rather than beauty, but steers clear of any dogmatism on this matter, too. He doesn't like strong effects, but knows how to cut you to the quick when you least expect it." (Grzegorz Niziołek)
"I recommend Borczuch for the consistent development of his independent, unique theatre language; for courage in breaking with aesthetic discipline and setting his own artistic rules contrary to audience habits and prejudice." (Marcin Kościelniak)
Sandra Korzeniak - she has never messed up any role, in fact the opposite.
"Personal risk backed by extraordinary abilities, precision, practice. Craziness, spontaneity, and intuition which don't so much 'just happen' as are an intrinsic element of her acting." (Joanna Derkaczew)
"She has never messed up any role, in fact the opposite, only she has never been given parts in which she could make her mark as a so-called big name. But Lupa knew what he was doing when he cast her in his recent productions, in a way preparing both her and himself for the great leap, namely 'Marilyn'. They both jumped very far indeed, and Sandra K. proved that her place was at the forefront." (Tadeusz Nyczek)
"She took a risk, she dared to go on the toughest expedition for an actress: to where Marilyn Monroe's star went out - into the dark regions of fame, suffering, and death. This is a creation built by overstepping privacy, but still it is theatre; great theatre involving the audience at all levels of emotion and sensitivity." (Jacek Cieślak)
"Breakthroughs in acting happen very seldom indeed. With her extreme commitment to the role of Marilyn Monroe, she has made the categories of acting falsity and truth mean something completely different today than they did just a year ago." (Paweł Sztarbowski)
Barbara Wysocka - a Renaissance person in theatre.
"An actress and novice director who makes her remarkable individuality felt in both one field and the other." (Wojciech Majcherek)
"Her distinguishing feature in every field of her activity is extraordinary professionalism, care for detail, discipline both intellectual and aesthetic. She designs and successfully builds her theatre with an almost mathematical precision." (Anna R. Burzyńska)
"A Renaissance person in theatre. An excellent actress, respected director, who sometimes also works as a stage designer and author of video projections and music arrangements. Her appearance in a project usually forecasts remarkable qualities and unconstrained thinking." (Paweł Sztarbowski)
For nominations were also taken into consideration:
Mariusz Bieliński (playwright), Katarzyna Borkowska (stage designer), Mirek Kaczmarek (stage designer), Krzysztof Garbaczewski (director), Karolina Gruszka (actress), Marta Guśniowska (playwright), Anna Maria Karczmarska (stage designer, costume theoretician), Dariusz Kosiński (theater theoretician), Marcin Liber (director), Magdalena Maciejewska (stage designer), Rafał Maćkowiak (actor), Grzegorz Małecki (actor), Agnieszka Olsten (director), Paweł Passini (director), Maćko Prusak (choreographer), Małgorzata Sikorska-Miszczuk (playwright), Krzysztof Zarzecki (actor).
Following experts nominated the candidates: Anna R. Burzyńska ("Tygodnik Powszechny", "Didaskalia"), Jacek Cieślak ("Rzeczpospolita"), Joanna Derkaczew ("Gazeta Wyborcza"), Łukasz Drewniak ("Dziennik", "Przekrój", TVP Kultura), Jacek Kopciński ("Teatr"), Marcin Kościelniak ("Tygodnik Powszechny", "Didaskalia"), Wojciech Majcherek (TVP Kultura), Grzegorz Niziołek ("Didaskalia", Jagiellonian University), Tadeusz Nyczek ("Przekrój"), Paweł Sztarbowski (The Zbigniew Raszewski Theatrical Institute)
Anna Konik - for the ability to astutely record difficult aspects of human experience.
"Her works stand out as mature and bold examples of dealing with unpopular themes - people who are excluded, old, lonely, weird". (Monika Małkowska)
"For turning the film medium into a tool sensitive to the human psyche. For the ability to astutely record difficult aspects of human experience - disease, loneliness, lost identity. And for the precision with which she uses emotionally and poetically marked images to build an installation with a three-dimensional, cohesive, architectural order". (Katarzyna Włodarska)
Karol Radziszewski - for his own work, working on himself, and for… skilfully pissing on the cake.
"He eradicates the Polish taboo over being gay. This year he prepared a magnificent exhibition at Zachęta [gallery] - provocative, sometimes repulsive, but innovative." (Dorota Jarecka)
"A nomination for courage and an innovative approach to presenting art at Warsaw's Zachęta. For a consistent artistic stance, expressed in everything he undertakes." (Marek Nowicki)
"A nomination for his own work, working on himself, and above all for skilfully pissing on the cake." (Jacek Werbanowski)
"He is an artist always seeking new impressions, identity in art, freedom in life, independence in social and existential contexts." (Paweł Łubowski)
The Krasnals - in the hope that the circumstances of the possible receipt of the Passports will induce the group to unmask themselves.
"A nomination for quite a successful attempt to prick the omnipresent bubble filled with quasi-critical gibberish. In the hope that the circumstances of the possible receipt of the Passports will induce the group to unmask themselves." (Jacek Werbanowski)
"For consistently commenting on the socio-political reality and criticizing the social-artistic system of connections. An example of modern and very effective self-promotion using the Internet." (Marek Nowicki)
"Through their artistic provocations against the art establishment, they oppose ossified connections and coteries. Their hoaxes and interventions bring a breath of fresh air to the art world. They are the authors of the first example in years of an artist rebellion against the existing manager/curator-defined reality, not just in Poland." (Paweł Łubowski)
For nominations were also taken into consideration: Paweł Althamer, Wojciech Bąkowski, Olaf Brzeski, Michał Budny, Wojciech Doroszuk, Roman Dziadkiewicz, Maurycy Gomulicki, Łukasz Jastrubczak, Tomasz Kowalski, Zbigniew Libera, Kamil Kuskowski, Anna Molska, Anna Orlikowska, Agnieszka Polska, Tomasz Rygalik, Maciej Sieńczyk, Zorka Wollny, Paweł Żak.
Following experts nominated the candidates: Piotr Bernatowicz ("Arteon"), Grzegorz Borowski ("Obieg"), Dorota Jarecka ("Gazeta Wyborcza"), Rafał Kamecki (www.artinfo.pl), Paweł Łubowski ("Artluk"), Monika Małkowska ("Rzeczpospolita"), Marek Nowicki ("Sztula.pl Gazeta Antykwaryczna"), Anna Theiss ("Dziennik. Gazeta Prawna"), Jacek Werbanowski ("Exit"), Katarzyna Włodarska ("Art & Business")
Krzysztof Urbański - for his surprisingly mature conducting method.
"He is undoubtedly one of the most fascinating Polish conductors of the young generation. His charisma behind the pulpit and his persuasive interpretation visions are increasingly appreciated around the world. He already works with leading orchestras, especially European ones, and his upcoming professional plans could significantly strengthen his international position." (Robert Kamyk)
"He is 27, which for a conductor is practically kindergarten age, as of 2010 he will be the Trondheim Symfoniorkester's principal conductor, and he also conducts numerous concerts with other foreign orchestras. More important than his growing success, though, is his talent, the ease with which he establishes contact with musicians, and his excellent, surprisingly mature conducting method." (Jacek Marczyński)
Barbara Wysocka - for a tender, sensitive blending of stage gestures and music.
With Glass's 'The Fall of the House of Usher', she has restored faith in well-planned and smart opera directing. She has proved that music doesn't have to restrict a director, a score is not a theatrical prison, and a libretto can present rewarding material for theatrical processing. Nomination for a brilliant debut, for seeing music and hearing theatre." (Daniel Cichy)
"For an excellent production of Philip Glass's 'The Fall of the House of Usher' at the Teatr Wielki Polish National Opera - for her flair for intelligent narration of a libretto and an excellent ear sensitive to music. For creating a genuine symbiosis of images, lyrics, and music." (Jacek Hawryluk)
"For a tender, sensitive blending of stage gestures and music. For the hope that Polish music theatres will start hiring stage directors able to notice the special nature of the opera genre and read the text on all its planes, first and foremost through the music score. For an effective and professional collaboration with singers, for maintaining the right proportions between the instrumental, vocal, and acting aspects of a production." (Dorota Kozińska)
Marcin Zdunik - for stunning technique, virtuoso charm, and an admirable diversity of interests.
"A young cellist of phenomenal sensitivity, musical imagination, and technical skill. This is no ordinary performer but a 'creative' artist - often presenting his own, masterly transcriptions and compositions (brilliant arrangements of Paganini's caprices, Bach's violin sonatas, or works by Ravel). Already an award-winner at many prestigious competitions and a star of the world's concert stages. He plays beautifully, wisely, and - most importantly - convincingly." (Adrianna Ginał)
"Stunning technique, virtuoso charm, and an admirable diversity of interests set this young artist apart. Humility in the face of everyday hard work, respect for and curiosity about other people's achievements, openness to creative collaboration - all this bodes well for his career at a time when haughty virtuosos are a little passé. Working on sound quality, searching for his own melody, his own phrasing, resisting popular stage mannerisms - this gives Marcin Zdunik a chance to build his own, distinctive artistic personality." (Adam Suprynowicz)
For nominations were also taken into consideration:
Aleksandra Buczek (soprano), Łukasz Długosz (flutist), Bartosz Cajler (violinist), Aleksandra Gryka (composer), Wojtek Gierlach (bass), Paweł Hendrich (composer), Maciej Kaziński (active organizer in the field of music), Aleksandra Kubas (soprano), Łukasz Kuropaczewski (guitarist), Aleksandra Kurzak (soprano), Mariusz Kwiecień (baritone), Paweł Łukaszewski (composer), Aleksandra Resztik (soprano), Rafał Siwek (bass), Paweł Wakarecy (pianist), Monika Wolińska (conductor), Rafał Zambrzycki-Payne (violinist), Piotr Zawistowski (bass, choirmaster).
Following experts nominated the candidates: Daniel Cichy ("Tygodnik Powszechny"), Tomasz Cyz ("dwutygodnik.com"), Adrianna Ginał ("Przekrój"), Jacek Hawryluk (Polish Radio Programme 2, "Gazeta Wyborcza"), Robert Kamyk (TVP Kultura), Dorota Kozińska ("Ruch Muzyczny"), Jacek Marczyński ("Rzeczpospolita"), Adam Rozlach (Polish Radio Programme 1), Ewa Solińska (independent journalist), Adam Suprynowicz (Polish Radio Programme 2).
Gaba (Gabriela) Kulka - for artistic courage, frankness, and openness which tugged at the heartstrings of more than just fans of alternative music.
"Her name obligates her but in no way determines this excellent vocalist and composer. In 2009, she revealed the fullness of her talent and showed the road she plans to follow in the coming years. The album 'Hat, Rabbit' commands respect. Gaba's artistic courage, frankness, and openness tugs at the heartstrings of more than just fans of alternative music. Despite some creative compromise, 'Sleepwalk' revealed the latest aspect of her talent. And then there's her vocals!" (Kamil Dąbrowa)
"We really like buzzwords in this country: eccentric, controversial, provocative. In Miss Doda's case, they take on the flavour of escort agencies, soft porn, and commotion. In Gaba Kulka's case, they acquire brightness, new meanings, artistic flair. Gaba is a natural child of music, born of a love of music. She has pulled jazz, poetic song, rock music, electro, theatre, and musical onto one stage. Thirty years old and four weird albums to boast of. Welcome to the land of seekers of the lost trademark." (Kuba Wojewódzki)
"I cannot recall a similar budding artist who jumped so quickly to the top ranks. I had no qualms when I invited Kulka to take part in the concert devoted to Niemen. I knew she would do great even in the concert's hardest song ('Marionetki'). It's worth noting that Piotr Kaczkowski discovered her. Already a few years ago, when Gaba's recordings were circulating privately, he presented them in his programmes." (Piotr Metz)
L.U.C. (Łukasz Rostkowski) - for consistency and exceptionality; ignoring fashionable trends, he follows the road of creative exploration.
"Consistent and exceptional. Ignoring fashionable trends, he follows the road of creative exploration. He has worked with leading Polish musicians for years. He recently performed in concert with Polish jazz stars - Namysłowski, Urbaniak, Możdżer - even though, as he says, he doesn't play any instrument. He is interested in the borderland of music and image. I wouldn't be surprised if, in a year or two, he were nominated for a Passport in the film or visual arts category. He is definitely a symphonic artist." (Kamil Dąbrowa)
"Bravo for the album '39/89' - another fantastic CD from L.U.C. - one of few Polish musicians with excellent prospects for an international career. He brilliantly combines reflection on the specificity of Polish history and culture with a universal musical message." (Marek Sierocki)
"He deserves a Passport for lifetime achievement, including the excellent retrospective covering major events in Poland's history from 1939 to 1989 (his latest album). L.U.C.'s work - especially in the past few years - contradicts the claim that in musical output, quantity does not translate into quality. This artist proves with bravado that it's well worth looking for one's own image and - furthermore - speaking one's own original language." (Piotr Stelmach)
Pustki - for creating their own new-wave sound of great dynamism and power.
"They have created their own new-wave sound of great dynamism and power. A group unusually skilled musically, and at the same time offering an impressively high standard of lyrics - both their own and those from Polish classics. A truly independent band." (Jacek Cieślak)
"It makes no difference whether they play their own songs, write new music to old silent movies, or illustrate a theatre performance with sound - with each step, they prove that they are one of the most original and most intelligent Polish guitar bands. With the album 'Kalambury' they have proved one more thing: that the poems of Tuwim, Broniewski, Leśmian, Gajcy work perfectly as lyrics for contemporary songs. Let's give them this Passport while there's time, for soon they could be too great and too famous for any awards." (Robert Sankowski)
"They already deserved the award last year, and all the more so this year. We know they can write very good songs themselves, and now they have set a collection of poems by Polish classics to their own music, creating one of the best albums of its kind in recent years. Yet again, they have successfully changed their style while retaining credibility in the eyes of their earlier audiences from the alternative rock scene." (Bartek Chaciński)
For nominations were also taken into consideration:
Audiofeels, Biff, Agnieszka Chylińska, Wojcek Czern, Dick4Dick, Adam "Nergal" Darski (Behemoth), Hatifnats, Lesław (Komety), Macio Moretti, NOT, Paristetris, Plan B, Rastasize, Paweł "Pablopavo" Sołtys, Pati Yang.
Following experts nominated the candidates: Bartek Chaciński ("Przekrój"), Maciej Chmiel (TVP Kultura), Jacek Cieślak ("Rzeczpospolita"), Kamil Dąbrowa (Radio TOK FM), Angelika Kucińska ("Hiro"), Piotr Metz ("Machina"), Robert Sankowski ("Gazeta Wyborcza"), Piotr Stelmach (Polish Radio Pr. III), Marek Sierocki ("Teleexpress"), Kuba Wojewódzki (TVN)
Source of Polish version: www.polityka.pl/paszportypolityki
See also: "Polityka" Passports 2008 edition..., 2007 edition..., 2006 edition..., 2005 edition..., 2004 edition..., 2003 edition..., Festival 2003..., 2002 edition...