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Freedom and Limitation -
The Anatomy of Post-modernism

SPTB 003
Jan Swidzinski
120 pages
8 x 10.5 ins

Jan Swidzinski was born in Bydgosczcz, Poland in 1923 and graduated from the Warsaw Academy of Fine Art in 1952. As a practicing artist he has worked in collaboration with the Polish Insitute of Art (on the problem of sign in art) and was founder of the Arts Research Section of the Polish Cybernetics Association. He was co-founder of the Repassage Gallery in Warsaw and was instrumental in the development of the Polish Conceptual Movement.

His interest in the function and meaning of art in society, both in theory and practice, resulted in the formulation of his proposal for a 'Contextual Art', which was first presented in the West at the Gallery San Petri, Lund, Sweden in 1976. He lives in Warszawa, Poland.

In this volume Swidzinski offers us insights, developed over many years of intellectual and practical study, into the dilemma of Art in the rapidly changing social and psychological landscape of the 1980s.

"At the moment we cannot propose a valid picture of reality. Such a picture does not exist. We can nevertheless speak about this state of affairs. We can address our situation; the necessity for reconstructing the universe. We can tell everyone that they themselves have the possibility of making such a reconstruction. We can argue that one cannot be passive in a world of chaos, that one cannot be simply defensive, that it is impossible to live between what happened in the past and what can happen in the future, that one cannot live in a "post-" or "pre-" era. We are living one life and this life must have some significance for us. Nobody will prompt us as to what it is to be like. Art has stopped creating patterns for others. It can, through contact with others, tell us about the necessity of developing one's own patterns. To be an artist today is to speak to others and to listen to them at the same time. Not to create alone but to create jointly."

Extract from Freedom and Limiattion - The Anatomy of Post-modernism
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