On a Journey

21.03 – 25.04.2012 On a Journey

Chopin Airport

artists: Paweł Althamer, Roman Banaszewski, Miłosz Benedyktowicz, Bogna Burska, Wojciech Doroszuk, Jarosław Modzelewski, Agnieszka Polska, Wilhelm Sasnal, Tomasz Tatarczyk
curator: Małgorzata Bogdańska-Krzyżanek

On a Journey is a second exhibition realised by the Zachęta National Gallery of Art as part of the project Art Gallery at Chopin Airport. The works on display are from Zachęta’s current collection, built since the 1990s and comprising mainly works by contemporary Polish artists exhibited at the Zachęta or projects co-produced by the gallery.

The venue – an airport – has obviously influenced the show’s subject matter. Travelling, however, is but a point of departure, background, and metaphor for the featured works.

Commuting to work or school or going to meet someone is also travelling. It is a regular part of our everydayness, a rather ordinary and non-fascinating one, as it is presented by Miłosz Benedyktowicz’s The Tramway. It is only unusual events and elements – such as a choir singing at an underground station and on an underground train in Paweł Althamer’s film – that can make it attractive and worth remembering. Wilhelm Sasnal similarly focuses in his paintings on capturing on his way the most personal, ephemeral, and seemingly unimportant.

A distant, planned or unexpected journey, involves a thrill of excitement as well as the awareness of an inevitable change – a fact explored in the work of Andrzej Dłużniewski, and present in the reflective question Where Are You Going? posed in Roman Banaszewski’s lithograph. Travelling often evokes a sense of nostalgia. It is triggered by the very motif of the road, present in the paintings of Tomasz Tatarczyk and Jarosław Modzelewski. Bogna Burska’s photographic series titled precisely The Road evokes an splendid, but disturbingly ambiguous, contrast – traces of blood on the snow. Wojciech Doroszuk’s film explores the currently topical theme of labour emigration, presenting a vision of hard work and the sense of anxiety and uncertainty that accompanies travelling in search of a better life and work in a highly picturesque and poetic image of bucolic nature. What Agnieszka Polska’s video immediately brings to mind is the idea of summertime travel, but this idyllic image is streaked with anxiety. The motif of travelling in the sense of going on a spiritual journey – exploring one’s states of body and mind – appears in Paweł Althamer’s The Boat and the Spacesuit.


Artists' works in the Zachęta collection

  • Zdjęcie pracy Tram (Good Morning, First Shift)
    Tram (Good Morning, First Shift)Miłosz Benedyktowicz1971
  • Zdjęcie pracy Hölderlin in Napoleon’s Uniform
    Hölderlin in Napoleon’s UniformJarosław Modzelewski1985
  • Zdjęcie pracy Devotion to Traditional Values
    Devotion to Traditional ValuesJarosław Modzelewski1986
  • Zdjęcie pracy The Sower and Reaper
    The Sower and ReaperJarosław Modzelewski1986
  • Zdjęcie pracy Drawing Water
    Drawing WaterJarosław Modzelewski1992
  • Zdjęcie pracy View of the Unfinished House
    View of the Unfinished HouseJarosław Modzelewski2000
  • Zdjęcie pracy View of the Road
    View of the RoadJarosław Modzelewski2000
  • Zdjęcie pracy Proboszcz we wnętrzu (Duży)
    Proboszcz we wnętrzu (Duży)Jarosław Modzelewski2000
  • Zdjęcie pracy Portret Erykah Badu
    Portret Erykah BaduWilhelm Sasnal2004
  • Zdjęcie pracy Kraków - Warszawa
    Kraków - WarszawaWilhelm Sasnal2006
  • Zdjęcie pracy Kacper
    KacperWilhelm Sasnal2004
  • Zdjęcie pracy Bez tytułu, cykl rysunków
    Bez tytułu, cykl rysunkówWilhelm Sasnal2004
  • Zdjęcie pracy Untitled
    Untitled Tomasz Tatarczyk1994
  • Zdjęcie pracy Step by Step
    Step by StepTomasz Tatarczyk1998
  • Zdjęcie pracy Road
    Road Tomasz Tatarczyk1991
  • Zdjęcie pracy Untitled
    UntitledTomasz Tatarczyk2003
  • Zdjęcie pracy Film
    FilmPaweł Althamer2005
  • Zdjęcie pracy Pelago and Luka
    Pelago and LukaPaweł Althamer2003
  • Zdjęcie pracy The Boat and the Spacesuit
    The Boat and the SpacesuitPaweł Althamer1991
  • Zdjęcie pracy A User's Manual
    A User's ManualPaweł Althamer1991
  • Zdjęcie pracy Moscow Metro Choir
    Moscow Metro ChoirPaweł Althamer2004
  • Zdjęcie pracy Holiday with the Professor
    Holiday with the ProfessorAgnieszka Polska2008
  • Zdjęcie pracy Road
    RoadBogna Burska2003
  • Zdjęcie pracy Where Are You Going?
    Where Are You Going?Roman Banaszewski1972
  • Zdjęcie pracy Crew II
    Crew IIRoman Banaszewski1973
  • Zdjęcie pracy Genclik Park
    Genclik ParkWojciech Doroszuk2008
  • Zdjęcie pracy Tumour imaginis
    Tumour imaginisWojciech Doroszuk2008
  • Zdjęcie pracy Raspberry Days
    Raspberry DaysWojciech Doroszuk2008


On a Journey
21.03 – 25.04.2012

Chopin Airport

partner of the project: Lotnisko Chopina w Warszawie
strategic partener of the gallery: Centrum Dobrego Obrazu
sponsor of the opening ceremony: Blikle
media patronage of the gallery: Gazeta Wyborcza, The Warsaw Voice, Stolica, artinfo.pl