General civilization processes evoked a number of investigations which, are similar, in different countries. It is worth observing local versions of these investigations, their specific contribution to the general picture of the vanguard and their future place in the history of the world’s culture. We begin our series of articles in which we shall discuss important achievements of Polish vanguard of theNatalia01.gif 70’s/years, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, with a description of the general background after 1970. The turn of 1969 and 1970 brought many organizational and ideational changes in the circles of artistic innovators. Besides a group of artists and critics formed in the 60's who worked for such galleries as Foksal Gallery, Wspoiczesna Gallery, Pod Mona Liza Gallery concerned with plain-airs and meetings, for example, in Osieki, Pulawy, Elblag and Zielona Gora, another group of new artists appeared who escape from the already existing artistic and social norms. Such exhibitions and meetings as “Antibiennial of Posters” in the Wspoiczesna Gallery in the 1970, “Dreamers'Meeting”, 1971 and “Endless Concert, Intuitional Co-action, in the El Gallery, 1972, Festival in Nova Ruda, 1971 and “Art Actual” in Wroclaw, 1972 were signals for artistic expansion. In 1970 the Film Form Workshop (Ffw) came to existence, Z. Kulik, P. Kwieck and J. Wojciechowski joined together and the Yes/No Gallery was founded. In 1971 the Permafo Gallery and Bureau of Poetry were established. Most of the artistic groups and galleries, however, emerged in 1972: Actual Art Gallery, Zero Gallery, Address Gallery. Akmulatory Gallery, Remont Gallery, Private Gallery of Art. The appearance of new artistic groups, centers and galleries caused revolutions in the organizational structure of the vanguard. Its artistic structure was much more complex. Dobro02.gifIn Poland a rapid development of vanguard groups began in the middle of the 50’s. Many trends based on the famous pre-war tradition H. Stazewski’s activity is the best example of this/and on foreign contacts. In the 60’s Biennials in the El Gallery became quite famous. Spacial forms made of metal were purely artistic. Simultaneously artists were faced with such questions as “social space” or “socialistic patronage”. These sculptures were made of waste materials and with the help of workers from heavy industry plants. Another important gallery, the Foksal Gallery based its program on the historical context of the world vanguard’s development. The Foksal Gallery organized cross sectional exhibitions presenting various aspects of contemporary art often philosophical or didactic in character. The program of the Foksal Gallery inclined towards autonomid art at the end of the 60’s. It was fully expressed in W. Borowski’s text “Art for Art Sake” in which he refered to such representatives of this attitude as Barry, Ben, Burren, Huebler, Judd, Kossuth, Klein, Reinhardt and Weiner. The attitude of the artists and critics from the Foksal circle represents an interesting return to the world of orthodox conceptualism. Various forms of optical art and technological art developed. Technique and mathematics were introduced to art; R. Winiarski, K. Wodiczko and R. Opalka are the best representatives of this. An interesting proposition was made by a group of artists from Wroclaw who towards the end of the 60’s developed a specific interpretation of conceptualism in the form of the so-called “impossible art”. They chose one of the conceptual ideas: reduction the object and of the medium in favor of the mental products of free imagination, were impossible to be executed. “The artist may construct the piece; the piece may be fabricated; the piece need not be built”, L. Weiner. Poetical interpretations of this statement caused multiplication of “written” schematic ideas article, being the products of free.Haka03.gif Imagination and thus impossible to be executed. These ideas also refered to the notion of art itself. The background of the artistic events which took place in the 70’s was shown with great simplification. A wave of new artistic manifestations absorbed, in fact, all the trends. Optical-technological trend was enriched by the usage of mass media for recording a picture such as photography and film. J. Robakowski, W. Bruszewski, P. Kwiek, and R. Wasko from Ffw are the representatives of a high level of filming investigations. Film camera with its technical possibilities and limitations creates certain relations between a film picture and a camera work. Such films as “Double Shutter”, by Siep, “Fog Line” by Cotthein, “Hall” by Cidal, “Lenseless” by John Du Cane and first of all the films by Ffw are the best examples of this. J. Swidzinski “Model of the Cinema”. Actual Art Gallery (J. Marcolia, D. Baginski, J. Haka, Z. Sosnowski) based its investigations on photography and film in broad philosophical and social contexts. Both the Workshop and the Actual Art Gallery attempted to precise their concepts refering, in great extent, to structuralism and semiology. Besides their own theoretical system those artists distributed their works and spread information about themselves with the help of their own galleries and mail. Semiology or, in general, contemporary theory of language was applied not only in film and photography investigations but also in the “movement of actions”. Beginning of the process of communication (specific version of group creation) and then attempts of rational analysis of that process were one of most interesting activities of the young innovators after 1970. The experiments of Grotowski's Theatre became most famous and most influential. Beginning of the process of communication acquired especially interesting form during a meeting of artists and composers in the El Gallery in Elblag in 1972. Zszi04.gifThis kind of activity was continued and most consequently developed by W. Gutt and W. Raniszewski. In the same time the activity of those artists who attempted social criticism was radicalized. The criticism attacked the structure of artistic circles, the outdated structure of artistic presentation in galleries and magazines, the lack of dialogue between the artist and society, anachronistic financial basis of the artist etc. Ironical comments of A. Wisniewski were followed by radical activity of P. Kwiek and Z. Kulik (speaches, leaflets, intervention letters). Sensual trend, experiments with human body, discovery of sensitiveness by touch, material, nature at the beginning of the 70’s, best represented by K. Zarebski. So, the attack of the youngest generation of artists went in many directions. Radicalization of attitudes is the most characteristics feature. Artists rationalist approached science, sensualists and irrationalists, in the first stage, broke off with traditional forms of functioning of an artist in society, they isolated themselves working within small groups, private circles, rejecting traditional way of thinking. These two radical attitudes were realized in different ways. Yet both of them use photography, film, xerographic print. Processes of communication, of penetration into spheres of human sensitiveness were initiated, social criticism became more radical, methodology of science became popular. A new structure of artistic information exchange appeared.

   ← top page