VISIBILITY NORMS. OBSERVATIONS ON THE VISUAL CULTURE OF THE POLISH TRANSFORMATION
Meeting with Magda Szcześniak
Jarosław Kozłowski, "Standardy europejskie - wersja polska”, 1999, courtesy of the artist
Images appearing en masse in the late 80s and early 90s - illustrated magazines, street advertisements, foreign TV channels, computer games, soap operas - are usually considered nothing but a symptom of economic and social change.
But we can also say that they were actively participating in the processes of establishing and legitimation of the new system - they taught Poles how to be modern, inspired dreams and aspirations, provided visibility to some subjects (for instance the new middle class) while refusing it to others (rural dwellers and manual workers). Those images, present in the public sphere, created examples to follow, educated and shaped visibility norms. During the lecture we will take a closer look at the causative images of the Polish transformation, analyzing the relations between representation formulas and social changes.
dr Magda Szcześniak
culture specialist, works at the University of Warsaw's Institute of Polish Culture. Author of the book “Normy widzialności. Tożsamość w czasach transformacji” (Fundacja Bęc Zmiana, Warsaw 2016). She analyzes the Polish transformation after 1989 with a special focus on changes in visual culture and the public sphere. She has published in „Teksty Drugie”, „Konteksty”, „Dialog”, „Krytyka Polityczna”, „Kwartalnik Filmowy”, „Kultura Współczesna” and collective publications. National Science Center and Fulbright Foundation fellow. Editor of "Widok. Teorie i praktyki kultury wizualnej” magazine (pismowidok.org).