17 October 2013 Art at the festival of literature

If someone thinks that the Conrad Festival is a paradise for enthusiasts of reading only, they are mistaken. The programme of this year’s edition abounds in attractions from various areas of culture: from film screenings, through concerts and workshops, to exhibitions. When it comes to exhibitions, there are as many as 16. And which is especially pleasing: Krakow libraries got involved in the festival and are organising a number of their own exhibitions.

The first two ones will be open from Tuesday already at the branches of the Podgórze Public Library. Branch no. 22 (ul. Gołaśka 13/1)will present The Polish Masters of Children’s Book Illustration – an exhibition introducing the figures and oeuvre of artists such as: Jan Marcin Szancer, Bohdan Butenko, Zbigniew Rychlicki, and Edward Lutczyn. The exhibition at branch no. 16 (ul.Teligi 24) – A Different World of Illustration – presents the works of: Bohdan Butenko, Elżbieta Gaudasińska, Zbigniew Rychlicki, Olga Siemaszko, Andrzej Strumiłło, Janusz Stanny, and Jan Marcin Szancer.

As many as two vernissages have been planned for this coming Friday (the 18th of October). The Nowa Huta Public Library (os. Stalowe 12) will open an exhibition entitled The Magical World of Jan Marcin Szancer’s Illustrations (it will last until the end of November). And at 6:00 p.m., we would like to invite you to the Gallery of the ZNACZY SIĘ New Art Foundation (ul. Kościuszki 37), to the vernissage of the exhibition entitled A Well-Designed Book – Let’s Begin with Children (it will last until the 14th of November). A competition under this title has been organised by the Katowice Academy of Fine Arts since 2008. It is an interesting example of what goes on at Polish and international higher education institutions in terms of designing books for children. The exhibition of the 3rd edition of the competition will present several dozen designs of books illustrated in an interesting and innovative manner and designed by the youngest generation of illustrators, only just entering the publishing market. The presented designs have been selected from among hundreds of submissions by recognised illustrators, book designers, publishers, and... children.

From the first day of the Conrad Festival, art will reign supreme at Pałac Pod Baranami, where the Festival Centre is located, and at Pracownia Pod Baranami situated in the palace’s basement. The programme includes an exhibition of collages created by Franz Falckenhaus – creator of the unique poster for this year’s Conrad Festival, and a presentation of posters promoting reading created by Jan Bajtlik (the presentation entitled How to Encourage a Child to Read and a tour of the exhibition with its author have been planned for the 25th of October at 12:30 p.m.). The Krowodrza Public Library (ul. Królewska 59) will present an exhibition of Zbigniew Rychlicki’s illustrations for stories and cartoons such as: Miś Uszatek, Plastuś, and Słoń Dominik; and Bunkier Sztuki – an exhibition initiating the activity of the Small Institute of Polish Illustration, which constitutes an attempt at taking a new look at the works of Bohdan Butenko, one of the best-known and most-awarded Polish graphic artists in the world. Bohdan Butenko himself will also meet with the audience in Krakow. We know that many of you are looking forward to this!

The Szara Kamienica Gallery (Rynek Główny 6) is organising an exhibition entitled Conspirators of Imagination. It will present illustrations for four books by Agnieszka Taborska, writer and expert in surrealism: Selena Kimball’s collages for Senny żywot Leonory de la Cruz (The Dreamy Life of Leonora de la Cruz) and Nieokończone życie Phoebe Hicks (The Unfinished Life of Phoebe Hicks; coming out at the time of the Conrad Festival), Mieczysław Wasilewski's drawings for Wieloryb, czyli przypadek obiektywny (The Whale, or: Objective Coincidence), and Andrzej Klimowski's linocuts for Nie tak jak w raju (Not Like in Paradise). The Manggha Museum of Japanese Art and Technology has prepared an exhibition entitled Max Ernst. Lover of Imagination. Books and Drawings. It is an exhibition of Max Ernst's (1891-1976) book illustrations and drawings prepared by Stuttgart’s Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen. It presents 196 drawings that this outstanding artist created for works by: Paul Eluard, Tristan Tzara, Hans Arp, Franz Kafka, Kurt Schwitters, Antoin Artaud, Lewis Carroll, and texts by Andre Breton, leader of the surrealist movement and author of a surrealist manifesto, as well as collage books, such as: Histoire naturelle (1926), La femme 100 tête (1929), and Rêve d’une petite fille qui volt entrer au Carmel (1930). The exhibition documents Ernst’s works from the surrealist period in particular, but it also includes the period of Dadaism and single drawings from the later period, dominated by cubist and geometric elements.

Wydawnictwo Literackie has prepared a real treat for the enthusiasts of Witold Gombrowicz’s work. On the 24th of October, readers will have the one and only opportunity to see Kronos just as Rita Gombrowicz discovered it years ago. A special night presentation of the manuscripts of the text, the premiere of which provoked a real storm in the spring of 2013. It will take place in the seat of Wydawnictwo Literackie on ul. Długa 1. The event begins at 8:00 p.m. The presentation ends at midnight.

But there is more. The Śródmieście Public Library (branch no. 16, al. Pokoju 33) invites everyone to the exhibition entitled Polish Book Artists – Józef Wilkoń’s Inspirations from Nature (opening on the 25th of October), the Arteteka of the Regional Public Library (ul. Rajska 12) – to the exhibition of The Son of His Father presenting original cartoon boards created by Nicolas Presl, and the Lokator bookstore (ul. Mostowa 1) – to the PIO Book of Anxiety exhibition.

We would also like to remind you that during the festival, an installation called Podstawa (The Base) created by Martyna Wolna – winner of this year’s competition for the most interesting project inspired by a book – will be exhibited in the Market Square.