The Warsaw Voice » Stage & Screen » Monthly - July 6, 2018
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A Brief History of Polish Industrial Design on Show
The “Ineffable space” exhibition at the Zachęta National Gallery in Warsaw presents works by Jerzy Sołtan, Lech Tomaszewski and Andrzej J. Wróblewski, artists associated with the Faculty of Design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw, the precursors of the industrial designer profession which had its beginning in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

The exhibition presents selected works of artists gathered around three interwoven fields of their interests and activities: art, architecture and design. The boundaries of these fields, not always sharp, as well as broad interests of artists in the form, mathematics, natural sciences, psychology, philosophy or semantics, have determined the nature and richness of their achievements.
"This is a historic exhibition,” Agnieszka Szewczyk, curator of the exhibition said. “It talks about three designers, crucial for the formation of the designer’s profession in the shape we think about it today.”

"At the same time, they created a component of the artistic language typical of that period, understood as the ability to respond to the dynamic changes, progress and innovation," she added.

The exhibition opens with the “Art” room with drawings made by Jerzy Sołtan in the POW camp in Murnau, and a series of works showing his fascination with the great classics of the twentieth century avant-garde.

Next to them are mathematics-inspired works of Lech Tomaszewski and still life photographs by Andrzej J. Wróblewski, which give a good insight into the interests and creative personalities of the artists.

The SPACE room hosts modernist architectural designs such as the Warszawianka sports complex (1956-1964), the Polish Pavilion in Brussels (1956), the Zachęta extension project (1958) or a Auschwitz - Birkenau Monument design competition entry (1958). All the works related to public facilities with very diverse functions - introduced innovative architectural and construction solutions, as well as a modern approach to the role and social tasks of architecture understood more broadly than construction.

The last exhibition room is devoted to “Industrial design showcasing three design systems followed by the three pioneers of Polish modern design: Corbusier ‘s Modulor concept, drawn by Jerzy Sołtan, a visual lecture on mold morphology, inspired by topological theories, as well as a fragment of an exhibition “Variability of seeing nature in art”, revealing a designer’s interest in natural forms and the natural world as universal models.
The exhibition can be viewed
until August 5.