We want to be modern

The National Museum in Warsaw launches a fascinating exhibition next week that will cover the country’s design history during the ‘post-thaw’ period of 1955 to 1968.

The ten year period saw an explosion of Modernism in the country and a love for abstract art forms blossomed, following the socialist realism that was popular after 1945. Design also entertained the freedoms of the abstract art world, with patterned ceramics and thick richly covered glazes, experimental furniture and the renowned alternative film posters.

A Modernist chair
Jan Kurzątkowski, Chair, birch, bent plywood, black and clear varnish,1956

The exhibition will include more than 180 objects from the museum’s collection that are significant to the shaping of modernity and the modern Polish identity emerging during the post-thaw period.

As well as the aesthetic merits of each item, the exhibition aims to show the ‘social lives’ of the works on display. This isn’t, sadly, a chair, table and vase out on the town, but an attempt to show how the objects were used in magazines and films to promote modern living.

The exhibition will also be accompanied by lectures, film screenings and workshops to cover the rich history of this period.

An excellent chance for a spring getaway, if ever we heard one.

We want to be modern runs from 4 February – 17 April at The National Museum in Warsaw, Aleje Jerozolimskie 3 Warsaw, Poland.

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