Instytut Sztuki Wyspa, Gdańsk: re.act.feminism #2

Gdzie sie podzialy Angelika Fojtuch 1: Patrycja Orzechowska

re.act.feminism #2 in Gdańsk

Gdańsk / Gdynia,  23.03.2012 – 24.04.2012

Instytut Wyspa hosts the Polish edition of the exhibition, workshop and archive series rooted in feminist gendercritical and queer performance – the broadest initiative of the genre in Poland

Gdzie sie podzialy by Angelika Fojtuch 1. Photo: Ola Went

The series was initiated last October by an international group of artists and curators, with the first edition held in Spain at the Centro Cultural Montehermoso in Vitoria-Gasteiz. The archive continues to expand as a living project that travels through six European countries through September 2013. As a collective of 120 artists and groups, the initiative aims to research feminist, gendercritical and queer performance artistic actions from the 1960s through today, with a focus on Eastern and Western Europe, the Mediterranean and Middle East, the US and several countries in Latin America. On its route through Europe this temporary archive will continue to expand through local research and cooperation with art academies and universities. Exhibitions, screenings, performances and discussions open the project up to the public and further build up its archive of activity as part of this trans-national dialogue.

In Poland the initiative takes off at the Wyspa Instytut Sztuki in Gdańsk, historically known as a "free city" and in our times the birthplace of Solidarity. On the 23rd of March curators Aneta Szyłak and Aleksandra Grzonkowska open an exhibition of works by Polish artists across generations, featuring Angelika Fojtuch, Izabela Gustowska, Poshya Kakil, Rozhgar Mahmood Mustafa, Paulina Ołowska, Ewa Partum, Anna Szwajgier and Zorka Wollny and Teresa Tyszkiewicz. These artists all create works that are centred around a very personal form of expression, based in great part on the body, but also on the spiritual and social aspects of existing within a particular gender.

The exhibition of paintings, photographs, video works and performance pieces opens at 6:00 p.m and runs through the 22nd of April at Wyspa. Throughout the next four weeks, Wyspa hosts a programme of lectures and workshops, also curated by Aneta Szyłak and Aleksandra Grzonkowska.

Selected events:

    Thursday, 29 March 2012, 6 pm

Ewa Małgorzata Tatar – Is Showing Feminist Art Feminist Curatorship?

Ewa Małgorzata Tatar revisits past gender-oriented exhibitions. Her particular interest within the context of feminist art concerns redefining the political as a way of repositioning the sensual beyond the objectifying gaze. Ewa Małgorzata Tatar is an art critic, curator and art historian. She is also the editor of Panoptikum magazine.

    Thursday, 5 April 2012, 6 pm

Hubert Bilewicz – Considering the Matrix of Art: The Meta-Artistic Dimensions of Feminist Performance

In the last few decades, performance art made by women has become the main area for the vitality of female creativity, the affirmation of experiences and forms of female social and political activism. Focusing on artistic dialogue, polemic, controversy and counter-proposals, in this lecture Hubert Bilewicz will analyse a selection of performances by artists such as Marina Abramović, Julita Wójcik and Angelika Fojtuch. Hubert Bilewicz is an art historian and a lecturer at the University of Gdańsk.

    Thursday, 12 April, 6 pm

Katarzyna Lewandowska – WAR – Women Art Revolution: Femininity, Body, Fetish. A `Creature-Artist´

The female artist became a Weird Creature, a Freak of Nature, a Peculiarity, an Exception, a Weirdo, because she denied nature (the nature of a woman). The essence of the art by the artists discussed in this lecture is total freedom, unleashed imagination, unrestrained desire, carnal love. Katarzyna Lewandowska is an art historian, feminist, Buddhist and a lecturer of art history at the Nicholas Copernicus University in Torun.

    Thursday, 19 April 2012, 6 pm

Julia Gierczak – Between the Imagined and the Real (and Reel ) – (Post)feminism according to Catherine Breillat ´

This lecture is an attempt to find lost coherence on the grounds of psychoanalytical theory, without which one cannot speak about (post)feminism in contemporary cinema. Julia Gierczak will tackle the interferences of psychoanalytical theory with various areas of pop culture. Julia Gierczak is a PhD student at the Department of Culture Studies of Gdańsk University, a film expert, a Polish philologist and a book editor. She is also a member of the editorial team of Panoptikum magazine.

Editor: Agnieszka Le Nart

See more information on the project at

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