Museum of the Future for the 90th anniversary of the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź
Anniversaries usually make you look back but for the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź the 90th anniversary of the opening of the permanent exhibition of the international collection of modern art of the 'a.r.' group is also an opportunity to look into tomorrow. in 2021, one of the oldest museums of modern art in the world, apart from studying its history, also reflects on its own place in the future that we are creating together.
An unusual collection of works by artists who are now icons of the world's avant-garde was presented for the first time on February 15, 1931 in a working-class city of Łódź. It only happened thanks to some artists who saw the need to create a modern concept for an art museum, who believed in it and put their ideas into practice. Polish artists, such as Strzemiński, Kobro, Stażewski as well as Przyboś and Brzękowski convinced some great world’s artists, such as Fernand Leger, Max Ernst, Hans Arp, SophieTaeuber-Arp and Kurt Schwitters to contribute and work towards the common idea. They, thus, donated a lot of their works to the collection, which became the cornerstone of the institution known today as the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź. 90 years ago this collective gesture gave birth to a story that continues to this day.
The Avant-garde Museum exhibition scheduled for autumn 2021 - showing the very beginnings of the Łódź institution and other similar initiatives of the time, in which artists such as Kazimir Malevich, Vladimir Tatlin, Aleksandr Rodchenko, Katherine Dreier and Marcel Duchamp were involved - is a project that is to transfer the idea from decades ago to the present day. It will show the museum conceived by avant-gardists as a space in which there is room to experiment with art and its reception, create a platform for the exchange of thoughts, stimulate critical reflection and explore the ways in which we see the world. In short, it is the concept allowing us to see the museum as a social initiative that can design the future. The exhibition will ask a question of whether we have exhausted the potential of its utopian, avant-garde concept. Starting with the historical ‘gesture’ of the then artists, the exhibition will talk about the past, but allowing us to look into the future at the same time; both the future of the museum institution itself as well as the whole society.
During the jubilee year, the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź will look for answers and inspiration in its own collections and in the past in general, but also in the work of outstanding contemporary artists. There will be exhibitions devoted to the artwork of Leopold Buczkowski and the curatorial practice of Urszula Czartoryska, a collective exhibition "The Earth is Flat Again", as well as projects to which the museum has invited, among others, Agata Siniarska, Céline Condorelli, Wendelien van Oldenborgh, Agnieszka Kurant, Jasmina Cibic, Marek Sobczyk and many others. These exhibitions will not only confront the contemporary with the avant-garde concepts but will also allow us to speculate about the future and offer possible scenarios for it.