The artist Agnieszka Brzeżańska will talk with Sebastian Cichocki, chief curator and head of research at the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw
Born in 1972 in Gdańsk, and educated in both Poland and Japan, Agnieszka Brzeżańska uses a variety of artistic media to build narratives centered around relaunching towards a future of emancipation and sustainable well-being. In her work, she also considers the links between different forms of life and natural forces on Earth.
Moving between different ontologies ranging from the advanced, contemporary scientific research to philosophy, ecology, and alternative systems of knowledge, such as alchemy, parapsychology, esotericism, Brzeżańska creates works in which she combines the conceptual with the intuitive, the discursive with the material, the archetypal with the contingent. She oscillates between the remote past, the present consisting of digital flows, and a future yet to be built.
In her vision, permeated with a revealing and sharp humor, the human is always intertwined with the wider ecological system. Brzeżańska attributes an emancipatory character to the relationship humans can have with natural forces, especially those of the plant and aquatic worlds and waters. She often returns to these themes and dwells on, among other things, the healing properties of plants and water. Importantly, both are often interpreted by her in their capacity to convey the notion of matriarchal feminine. Her frequent returns to the precursory knowledge of natural healing methods, as well as her approach to creating works in the form of everyday objects and tools, are both ways of alluding to the possibility of actively entering into a relationship with the essence of existence – for example, she has been organizing an artistic residency on a boat that gracefully glides on the Vistula river for several years now. Brzeżańska’s artistic objects and installations aim to reassert the importance of autonomy and subjectivity by taking charge of one’s own needs, rather than letting oneself be moved by external forces.