The Racing Automobile Is More Beautiful than the Nike of Samothrace

The Racing Automobile Is More Beautiful than the Nike of Samothrace

The exhibition from the collection of the Poster Gallery of Piotr Dąbrowski accompanies the museum's "Andrzej Wróblewski: Recto/Verso. 1948–1949, 1956–1957" exhibition, and showcases posters designed during Wróblewski's times. The selection of works has been constructed around important, dramatic moments in the history of postwar art. It opens in the 1940s with the first wave of modernity, continues through the socialist-realist period implemented in 1949 and the post-Stalinist "thaw" after 1956, and closes in 1962.

"The racing automobile is more beautiful than the Nike of Samothrace!” wrote Wróblewski in 1948 in the essay "Absolute Painting." At the outset of his artistic career, he valued the speed of response to reality as highly as he did the social role of art. The direct realism he spoke about in the context of his paintings was meant to provide art with ease of communication, legibility and with broad social reach. For art to work, it had to arise in relation to the driving force of the contemporary world and civilization - it had to maintain the pace of revolutionary changes. This attitude translates into acknowledging both sketchiness and precariousness in artistic solutions.

The poster exhibition is a way to examine the contexts of daily life and of the street during Wróblewski's life and times. Advertising content is intertwined with political inference, while the consumption and recruitment medium – guided by the hand of the Polish People's Republic authorities – serves the implementation of real socialism. As with the works of Wróblewski, these posters portray the spirit of those turbulent times – torn between propaganda and artistic experiment.

All the posters in the exhibition come from the Collection of the Poster Gallery of Piotr Dąbrowski. Built since the mid 1970s, the collection numbers tens of thousands of items and covers the most important trends and topics in 20th-century Polish poster design.

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