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Joseph Beuys, Polentransport 1981. Exhibition on the mezzanine

In August 1981, Joseph Beuys with his family came to Łódź bringing with himself a unique gift…He donated over 700 of his works to the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź. That event, which he called Polentransport 1981, was an echo of a gesture that Władysław Strzemiński had made precisely 50 years earlier, when he had donated a collection of works of the most outstanding artists representing the world’s avant-garde, today known as the International Collection of Modern Art of the a.r. group, to a just emerging new public institution. The exhibition on the mezzanine presents photographic documentation of Joseph Beuys's visit to the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź.

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Place

ms1, 36 Więckowskiego St, entrance from 43 Gdańska St, mezzanine

Time

April 12 - July 1, 2022

To put it in terms used by Joseph Beuys: between 1980 and 1981 the Poles created a gigantic social sculpture composed of ten million elements - anti-socialist elements, as the communist propaganda called them. It was Solidarity, the first trade union independent of totalitarian power in a land situated roughly between Eisenach in the German Democratic Republic and Vladivostok in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. And in numerous places scattered around the world - China, North Korea, Cambodia...

The appearance of Solidarity was for Beuys not only a visible sign of the collapse of the communist dictatorship, but also a harbinger of the construction of a new reality. This union, created mainly by workers, was the embodiment of the third way: the search for compromise, an attempt to overcome the limitations of both capitalism and communism, but with
the preservation of social achievements, and with a strong sense of community and tradition. Solidarity's activity appeared as an ideal example of a social sculpture invented by the artist, in which the material is human actions that affect the way it functions, that is, the shape of the human community.

In August 1981, Joseph Beuys arrived in Łódź with his family, carrying a gift of over seven hundred drawings, objects, archival materials and documentation of his past activities in a wooden crate placed on the roof of a camper van. After his arrival he complemented it with
a series of 13 drawings - notes from the action of presenting the gift.

Photos from the photographic archive of the Muzeum Sztuki, Lodz. The collection documenting Beuys's visit consists of 136 photographs. A large part of them was shown at the exhibition "Economy of the gift: Joseph Beuys, Polentransport 1981" at the Polish Institute in Düsseldorf at the turn of 2021/22.

The exhibition was part of the official celebration of the centenary of Joseph Beuys' birth in Germany.


The presentation of archival materials is available every day, except Mondays, from 9.00-16.00 and on Thursdays from 9.00-18.00. Entry PLN 1. You can also see the exhibition by purchasing a ticket to the temporary exhibition in ms1.

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exhibition concept

Maciej Cholewiński, Aneta Błaszczyk-Smolec

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INFO

Place

ms1, 36 Więckowskiego St, entrance from 43 Gdańska St, mezzanine

Time

April 12 - July 1, 2022

exhibition concept

Maciej Cholewiński, Aneta Błaszczyk-Smolec

Share

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