Where is the body. On Agnieszka Rayss’s project.

Or rather: what is it like and who does it belong to? Is photography able to convey shapes and structures of the body shell the same way the beautiful wax moulages do?

‘I started with collecting them” – says the photographer. University Museums within Anatomy Departments and those opened next to M.E. Office in Hamburg, the collection of Forensics Center in Wrocław - these were the areas of her explorations. She photographed body parts, internal organs and bones stored in repositories and locked away in cabinets as well as moulages, the plaster or wax models perfectly imitating surfaces of objects - in this very case those of the body and skin, which were showcased as permanent expositions.

Mariusz Hermanowicz. What might photography be used for?

Mariusz Hermanowicz’s work focuses on some crucial and recurring threads. Its central place is taken by the interest in people. Observing them in various situations and telling their stories through applying a vast spectrum of photographic conventions are the motives which are present in every period of his artistic endeavor. Starting with photojournalism and finishing with studio photography, Hermanowicz showed their struggle with daily routine, but also elusiveness and randomness of encounters, fragility and precariousness of what is physical. Protagonists of his photos were accidental strangers, but also very close people and finally he himself.
The second returning theme is the passing time, evanescence and reflection on the unique value of every single moment. Photography served him as a vehicle through which he was able to search for what’s gone, a tool with which he could inventory traces, but also a medium, he used to regain and reclaim memories. Very often the image appeared not to be sufficient and because of so some photos are enriched with handwritten notes. Sometimes he wrote just one sentence, on other occasions – used more elaborate narration. These works are full of irony. However, there is often a nostalgy beneath.

Wojciech Zamecznik in Centre Pompidou

What unites graphic design, stage design, photography and cinema is this interest in the new, in the development of both technology and contemporary artistic language,” wrote Wojciech Zamecznik in 1961.
The dialogue between photography and the graphic arts begun in the first two decades of the 20th century would prove especially fecund in the two-and-a-half decades following the end of the Second World War (1945–69). This exhibition looks at the post-war interaction of the two disciplines through some hundred photographs and other pieces drawn from the holdings of the Centre Pompidou and from public and private collections abroad. Often little known, these works cast light on an important phase in the relationship between photography and the graphic arts. While many graphic designers explored the use of photomontage, others favoured the formal abstraction that photography offered. Obtained by ingenious experimentation, their photograms and light drawings were used in advertisements, cultural posters, book covers and record sleeves. The representatives of this new visual sensibility were in great part trained or inspired by the Bauhaus. A pioneer in uniting the fine and applied arts, the school had seen the designer as an agent of society charged with the expression of the contemporary spirit. The books of the leading figures of the Bauhaus would exercise a decisive influence on these post-war photo-graphic artists, among them Laszlo Moholy-Nagy’s Painting, Photography, Film (1925) and Vision in Motion (1947) and György Kepes’s Language of Vision (1944) and The New Landscape in Art and Science (1956).