Saturday ArtWalk Online. Artibus
Guided tour in English

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Zachęta — National Gallery of Art owes both its seat and the mission of popularizing visual arts to the Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts (SEFA) established 160 years ago by art enthusiasts and artists. This dedication to art resounds in the inscription “Artibus” (To the Arts) on the building’s façade. From the very beginning, this mission has included collecting contemporary art – then and today. 

The selection of works at the current show reflects all stages of the institution’s formation and the collection’s creation: from the founding of the Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts, through the existence of the Central Bureau of Art Exhibitions, to the present day, when the Zachęta has become a national art gallery. Andrzej Pawłowski’s photographs from the series Genesis evoke the gestures of creating something “new”. Marlene Dumas’s drawing reminds us of the dramatic death of President Gabriel Narutowicz in 1922, shot at the Zachęta by the painter Eligiusz Niewiadomski. The assassination of the first president of the Republic of Poland coincides with the creation of Bronisław Kopczyński’s watercolor depicting the gallery’s building. This, in turn, corresponds to Krzysztof Wodiczko’s work on women as violence victims, presented as a video projection on the Zachęta’s façade. Jadwiga Sawicka uses cultural advertisements as a vehicle for “agitation” to show how art institutions should work, and Andrzej Sapija exemplifies the concept of a set. This visual-numerical record on paper shows in an abstract way a set of artistic objects with assigned inventory numbers. Using the image of Józef Simmler’s painting Death of Barbara Radziwiłłówna (1860) – a part of Edward Krasiński’s 1997 installation reiterates the exhibition of this contemporary artist at the Zachęta, and at the same time presents an incarnation of the first art work purchased by the Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts. 

guide: Sara Herczyńska

event accompanying the exhibition
  • 01.10.2020 – 07.02.2021
    Living Storages: Artibus

    Zachęta — National Gallery of Art owes both its seat and the mission of popularizing visual arts to the Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts (SEFA) established 160 years ago by art enthusiasts and artists. This dedication to art resounds in the inscription “Artibus” (To the Arts) on the building’s façade. From the very beginning, this mission has included collecting contemporary art – then and today.

    Zachęta – National Gallery of ArtZachęta
Upcoming events
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  • 04.02 (Sat) 17:00
    Saturday Artwalk
    Kulisiewicz. Succinct Beauty
    Zachęta – National Gallery of ArtZachęta
  • 05.02 (Sun) 12:15
    Stasys Eidrigevičius. Tour of the exhibition
    (in Polish)
    Zachęta – National Gallery of ArtZachęta