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Warsaw: “Diversequality” exhibition

November 3, 2020 - April 20, 2021


Exhibition in the National Ethnographic Museum in Warsaw, part of the „Iconic things” series

Curators: Tomasz Armada, Agata Pyzik

PME curators: Anna Grunwald, Aleksander Robotycki

DIVERSEQUALITY is our attempt to rethink the question, who are contemporary Poles? We explore the subject of the extremely dynamic social changes in Poland of the last 30 years, whose tempo did not slow down over the years. Our main subject is the diversity of the many conflicts persisting in Polish society. Millennials vs boomers. The Intelligentsia vs The Benefit Scroungers. Our exhibition portrays these new debates as well as roots them within the social and media context. The main inspiration was the existing tension between high culture, low culture, city and foIk cultures and their transformations as well as certain recurring motives.

At the exhibition you will encounter 13 „types” – figures, which should be seen not as real people but more as social avatars and simulations. They were previously brought to life by the media discourse and glued together from the images created by tabloids, weekly newspapers, and populist gutter press.

This characteristic „typology”, refers to Polish literary traditions, mostly from satirical and journalistic works, where various human types were humorously presented. The essential similarity is visible typization,  verging on caricature.  We encounter characters of an intentionally „one-dimensional, personality.

In transitional periods, typology lets us understand better what is happening and motivates our return to our origins. One of our inspirations was the iconography of the „Polish dances” paintings by Polish artist Zofia Stryjeńska, who revives the Highlander, folk style and its avant-garde, but popular expression in interwar Poland.

About „Iconic Things” project

The „Iconic Things” project was made to create conditions for an interdisciplinary discussion devoted to the cult phenomenon, and to select iconic things and ideas. They will be selected together with the audience and presented at exhibitions accompanied by a special program of educational activities.

The project aims to draw the audience’s attention to an interesting and engaging area of reality, which is the cult and disruptive aspect of certain cultural phenomena, which is subject to ethnographic research and is not clearly associated with traditional ethnography.



November 3, 2020
April 20, 2021
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