Muzeum Sztuki: Open Composition
ms¹ complex (the Neoplastic Room, the Open Storage, Workshop Room, Terraced Reading Room, ms1 Hall on the side of Gdańska St., Courtyard)
New edition of the exhibition called Neoplastic Room. Open Composition was not only part of the openness that manifested itself in the museum complex on Więckowskiego Street. This re-composition of the Neoplastic Room– larger than the previous ones– accompanied the inauguration of new spaces at the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź location on Gdańska Street.
The evening event consisted of a tour guided by the museum’s director Jarosław Suchan of Neoplastic Room. Open Composition, guided tour of the Open Storage, presentation of archival materials on the Neoplastic Room in the new Reading Room, workshop demonstration of professional digitalisation of the museum objects and documents in the new Library, classes of the “Open Drawing and Painting Studio” in the new Workshop Room.
We prepared these events in order to show the functionality and capacities of the newly opened BC building. We highlighted that not only the new spaces, but the entire museum is open to public.
The evening started at 18.00 hrs with a guided tour of the Neoplastic Room. Open Composition exhibition guided by the director of the museum, Jarosław Suchan (gallery on the 2nd floor). Then until 21.00, in a rotational system, we were able to participate in the following events:
- guided tour of the Open Storage by Luiza Kujawiak
- presentation of archival materials of the Neoplastic Room, to which you are invited by Maciej Cholewiński– new Reading Room,
- presentation by Monika Cywińska from the Documentation Department (with hand on participation for volunteers) of professional digitalisation of museum objects and documents– new Library
- classes of "Open Drawing and Painting Studio” led by the Education Department in the new Workshop Room.
Neoplastic Room. Open Composition– Jarosław Suchan’s Opening Tour
Jarosław Suchan, the project’s chief curator, showed us around the new “edition” of the Neoplastic Room. Open Composition exhibition. The biggest re-composition of the Neoplastic Room so far was an opportunity to see some of the works that joined the ms collection.
The Open Composition project premiered in 2010. Since then, the Neoplastic Room, which used to be the centre of the collection of the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź, has become a catalyst and a reference point for activities of contemporary artists. At the current stage of the project, the dialogue is held between the Room or, more broadly, between the art of Strzemiński and Kobro, and the works of Daniel Buren, Igor Krenz, Liam Gillick, Monika Sosnowska, RH Quaytman, and Céline Condorelli. Albeit not inspired by the Room, other artists’ sculptures and installations exhibited as part of the project focus on themes that are encapsulated in the Room and relate to corporality and modernist ideologies involved in actively shaping the living space. Placed inside the Room, the work by Susan Hiller demonstrates how a common musical experience can lay foundations for “space-time rhythms” that engage the human body in new social and political rituals. Other aspects of the presence of the human body in an ideologized space are revealed and brought forward in the works by Magdalena Abakanowicz, Alina Szapocznikow, Kitty Kraus, Oskar Dawicki, Roman Stańczak, and Koji Kamoji. All of them create a catalogue of relations that take place between topography, human body and the experience of presence, absence, filling, and displacement. The exhibition also heralds a retrospective presentation of RH Quaytman.
Guided Tours of the Open Storage
Where: the Open Storage
Host: Luiza Kujawiak
Works of art– after their moments of pride and glory, while being exhibited and exposed to full view of public reception- go for a well-deserved rest to our museum storerooms. Check with your own eyes whether the works are kept in "fair" conditions. It is the museum "back kitchen", or the Open Storage. It is a specially adapted space that has strict rules concerning securing and storing the museum collections, while, at the same time allows us to display works of art in a convenient and interesting for visitors way. A visitor to the Storage has a great opportunity to expand their knowledge about the museum’s collection.
Presentation of Archival Materials of the Neoplastic Room
Where: new Reading Room
Host: Maciej Cholewiński
The Neoplastic Room serves not only as a memorable background for paintings, but as a work of art in itself. It was designed in 1948 by Władysław Strzemiński on order of Marian Minich, the then director of the Muzeum Sztuki. Originally, it was a presentation room for part of the a.r. group’s collection of paintings by artists associated with the Dutch group De Stijl and Neoplasticism (van Doesburg, Vantongerloo, Gorin, Taeuber-Arp, Hélion, Huszar, Stażewski), and sculptures- spatial compositions by Katarzyna Kobro and works by Władysław Strzemiński. The room was destroyed in 1950. The authorities saw in it a form of art that did not meet the requirements of the communist doctrine and was therefore seen as totally unnecessary, not to say, harmful. In 1960, the Neoplastic Room was reconstructed by Władysław Strzemiński's student Bolesław Utkin, and since that time, it has probably been the most recognisable artistic space on the map of Poland. The arrangement of works exhibited and the character of the room, previously called the Berlin Room, would change from time to time, but eventually since 2010, the Neoplastic Room has been a unique space where a dialogue between artists and exhibition curators regularly takes place.
The exhibition in the Reading Room of the Muzeum Sztuki library was created based on the collection of the Scientific Documentation Department. The following are objects on display that were shown for the first time:
• the only photograph of the original Neoplastic Room from 1948,
• original list of guests from June 13, 1948, who participated in the opening of the new seat of Muzeum Sztuki on Więckowskiego 36, and of the Neoplastic Room,
• model of the Neoplastic Room made by Bolesław Utkin from around 1960,
• documents related to its reconstruction and renovation from 1959- 1969,
• plans of the Neoplastic Room by Stanisław Cuchry-Cukrowski from 1981 used in its reconstruction at the Presences Polonaises exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Paris in 1983,
• photographs from various exhibitions, throughout various decades, that the Neoplastic Room has hosted.
The Search. An Open Drawing and Painting Studio
Where: new Workshop Room
Host: Barbara Kaczorowska
The purpose of the meeting was not to teach drawing and painting in the traditional approach. However, the participants drew and painted to get closer to understanding of contemporary art. Artistic activities are a language, a communication platform that helps us to explain important problems taken up by artists. The resulting products were rather a record of reflection, not a mere creation. No artistic abilities, nor aspiration to be an artist (now or in the future) were necessary to participate in the workshop. However, one needed to be willing to do experiments (especially artistic), be ready to face artistic activities, and need not expect to produce studied effects (beautiful images and realistic drawings).
The project of revitalisation of the infrastructure of the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź- Gdańska 43 was carried out from the funding obtained under the Operational Programme Infrastructure and Environment for the years 2014- 2020.