THE RESULTS OF THE 1ST INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION OF THE OUTDOOR GALLERY OF THE CITY OF GDAŃSK

The proceedings of the international jury of the competition for the permanent piece of art in a public space entitled “The Outdoor Gallery of the City of Gdańsk” will take place on 16th-17th July 2005 and will consist of two stages:

• the first stage includes the choice of the best 3-4 projects fulfilling the artistic criteria and competition regulations which will then qualify to the second stage of the competition.
• in the second stage, the jury will choose the project to be realized and decide about the first prize and other honourable mentions. Three financial awards will be given. The first prize amounts to the equivalent of 3000 Euro gross and the realization of the project is to be undertaken in 2006. Two honourable mentions will be paid: 1st, the equivalent of 1200 Euro gross, and 2nd, the equivalent of 800 Euro gross.

The jury consists of the following members:
1) Enrico Lunghi, Artistic Director of the Casino Luxemburg Gallery in Luxemburg
2) Jacek Dominiczak, lecturer at the Gdansk Academy of Fine Arts, Poland
3) Bettina Steinbrügge, curator, Lunneburg Gallery, Lunneburg
4) Adam Budak, curator, Museum-Joanneum in Graz, Austria
5) Dr. Dieter Brunner, Städtische Museen, Heilbronn, Germany
6) Norbert Weber, Artistic Director of ‘Port of Art’, City Council of Kotka, Finnland
7) Jadwiga Charzynska, Director of “Laznia” Centre for Contemporary Art in Gdansk, Poland
8) Maria Koprowska, architect, Director of Gdansk City Centre Planning Office, Poland

The Jury experts were:
1) Marian Kwapiński – Director of the Regional Conservatorial Office
2) Grzegorz Sulikowski – Gdansk Development Office

The official results of the competition was announced by the president of the City of Gdańsk and the chairman of the organizing committee of the competition, Paweł Adamowicz, during a press conference on 18th July 2005 at the Town Council Offices. The representatives of the organizing committee and the jury will take part in the conference as well.

The award ceremony will be held on 14th October 2005 in the Centre for Contemporary Art “Laznia” during the vernissage of a post-competition exhibition accompanied by the first, two-day symposium entitled “The artistic action in public spaces. Aesthetical and social aspects”. The symposium will concern the problem of contemporary art presentation in public spaces in the international field.

It will involve a meeting the audience and experts of such presentations in cities and post-industrial areas. The scheduled lectures will familiarize the audience with a variety of unique, artistic, international projects of a revitalizing character and will allow an exchange of opinions concerning interventional activities in urban areas. The symposium will initiate a media discussion on the necessity of artistic activities in the social life of deteriorated areas and the influence on their transformation. A post-symposium documentary will be published in November 2005.

On the 16th July 2005 after two-stage proceedings, the Jury ordained that in the First International Competition for the permanent work of art of the External Gallery of the City of Gdańsk, awards the following projects:

1st prize:
for the project entitled: LKW Galery, by Lex Rijks and Daniel Milohnic , representing Germany and the equivalent of €3,000 gross

2nd prizes:
1st level honorary title for the project: JOUR NOIR. Towards the diambulism. [White Night-Black Day]. By Philippe Rahm, cooperation: Cyrille Berger, Alexandra Cammas, Irene D’Agostino representing Switzerland and the equivalent of €1,200 gross.

2nd level honorary title for the project: ‘Invisible Gate’ by Front Studio, Yen Ha and Ostap Rudakevych representing the United States of America and the equivalent of €800 gross.

Justification:

The projects submitted to the competition are characterised by their international, high artistic level, which made the choice even more difficult. The jury was most interested in pieces of work which reflected the original concept of the External Gallery of the City of Gdańsk, which was to bring the gallery CSW Łaźnia outdoors and to involve the inhabitants of the Lower City directly with the project.

LKW Gallery, by Lex Rijks and Daniel Milohnic.
The project awarded with the main prize is, according to the jury, the most ambiguous and thought-provoking, endowed with a multitude of possible interpretations but is, at the same time, very close to peoples everyday experiences. It arouses interest due to its wonderful simplicity of materials as well as its legibility to residents of the Lower City District. A car squeezed under the flyover symbolically reflects the situation of the Lower City District, cut off as it is from the Old Town by the flyover. It symbolises differences in the social situation of neighbouring areas. The form of the object and the space that it presents opens many possibilities for use. It will be a place for the presentation of artistic events organised by CSW Łaźnia as a part of the already existing institution of culture. However, placing it in a public space will allow for greater integration of the local community, education for youngsters and projects, which will motivate residents.
The jury underlines that the piece is not an independent work of art but thanks to this it will become one due to the various artistic ventures that will be hosted there. The project envisages filling this area with new energy i.e. creating and hosting the permanent curator’s programme of CSW Łaźnia. Due to this, it is necessary for its accomplishment to guarantee financial means for cultural, educational and socially useful activity. The object can act as an information point, a meeting place and inspiration for viewers.

In contrast to the main prize project is the project awarded with an honorary title -JOUR NOIR. Towards the diambulism. [White Night- Black Day] by Philippe Rahm. This project envisages the creation of a light and sound installation, which reverses the experiences of humans in the situation of day and night by placing lamps and forms of beds sensitive to the temperature of passers-by, is highly metaphorical. It is based on the sensual experiences of every human being, regardless of their preparation, level of education or status. This contemplative and thought-provoking project, highly advanced technologically and aesthetically sophisticated makes it far removed from the everyday reality of the Lower City residents. The jury underlines its innovative approach and form as well as its great educational virtues hidden within the project. During the day, a person who walks within the range of the lamp’s “light” will feel cool and during the night, the light will turn on. While lying or sitting on the beds, a musical soundtrack will automatically be triggered – one of Chopin’s nocturnes. This makes the project universally unique. The piece of work serves to create a new atmosphere in the area, building new relations and improving the image of the location. As a small piece of architecture, it is on the border of design and visual art. However, this project would need permanent monitoring and supervision, as well as the one awarded with first prize.
The realisation of both projects LKW Galery and Jour Noir is recommended due to their complementary nature.

The honorary title was awarded to Invisible Gate by Front Studio due to its successful attempt to equalise the divisions between the Old Town and the Lower City.
Invisible Gate aims to abolish the physical barriers while being typically minimalist in its form, materials and architecture and displaying a high level of symbolism. By covering part of the flyover with steel lining in the form of mirrors, gives a new value to the Lower Town and in a way it remedies the mistake of those who designed the flyover and divided the two town districts. It physically and metaphorically brightens up the space under the flyover, making it feel wider. The advantage of this is its fragmentary character, showing the contrast between what is decorating and what is marring the city organism.
It is also a monumental project in its scale, having an influence on the whole city, giving it a new meaning. The Invisible Gate is characterised by its wide symbolism in the form of mirrors, reflections, multiplying the amount of people, its architecture and the river give a wide field for interpretation. It is worth emphasising the play of the light at various times of day and the change of colours as an aesthetic and sensual virtue. Moreover, this work is surprising and its location will encourage tourists to overcome “not existent” barrier and to visit the Lower City.

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