Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Exhibition: Poznan, Poland
This last weekend I was in Poznan, Poland, for a group art exhibition that hangs for the next month. The exhibition submissions asked artists to respond to the theme of "the pursuit of happiness". I arrive in Poznan by plane and take a bus and tram to get to the city centre. It takes me a moment to figure out which tram to get when I don't read Polish and trams are heading off in 4 different directions. After asking several people I finally make it to the old city square where the gallery is. The square is amazing and wraps around several cultural buildings in the very centre of it. One of these buildings is the Arsenal Gallery, pictured above, the largest contemporary gallery in Poznan. The opening is the night I arrive and the crowds start to gather outside for the formal speeches to open the month long exhibition. The guy on the treadmill is part of one of the pieces. This is my piece above. It is a large map of the world which is colour coded to match the key on the blue wall. It is a "map of happiness" according to studies of different countries and ranks countries from most happy to least happy. Upstairs in the gallery holds more work. Including sculpture and film. This one is a crowd favourite. A large interactive chocolate fountain (think "happiness")! Another one has 6 pumps and takes half an hour to inflate to view the art work. This is a great one. A strip tease in reverse. All you can see is are the clothes. The more that is taken off the less one sees! I spend the day after the opening wandering the streets of Poznan. I find a very crowded street and follow all the people. It turns out they were heading for a shopping district. The large cathedral on the right is the most detailed and opulent cathedral I have ever seen from the inside. The Calvary made a turn down the street I am on.