Europe-Fast East Gallery by K. Inga…

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© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden

The year 2015 marks twenty-eight years since the publication of Tygodnik Powszechny magazine’s interview in which Andrzej Wajda announced his intention to create a Museum of Japanese Art and Technology in Kraków – a permanent venue for exhibiting Feliks ‘Manggha’ Jasieński’s collection of Japanese art. In 1994, during the opening of the new building, nobody would have thought that the new facility would initiate a whole series of the artist’s ideas instigating the creation of new architecture in Krakow, along with new cultural and educational institutions. Following that project, which was unprecedented in every possible way, more were launched on Wajda’s inspiration: the Tea Pavilion with a garden, the Japanese Language School, the Wyspiański 2000 Pavilion, and now the most recent development – an exhibition annex to the Manggha Museum called Europe–Far East Gallery.

© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden

The idea for the new building came up in 2004 in connection with the Manggha Museum’s acquisition of the small plot of land adjacent to its site, along ul. Konopnickiej. The project initiators’ main objective was to broaden the scope of its intercultural artistic and exhibition activities – from Polish-Japanese to European-Far Eastern – which coincided with Poland’s accession to the European Union. The new exhibition space was intended for presentations of European art and the cultures of Southeast Asia, including the Indian Peninsula. The programme of the Gallery provides for shows of old and recent art. The new building has two exhibition rooms on two storeys. As intended by the management of the Manggha Museum, both are classic white cube spaces, as neutral in expression as possible, to allow for the display of various forms of mostly modern art. The Manggha building has keenly felt the lack of this kind of room because the characteristics of its main exhibition space were tailored to the requirements specific to the display of historic art, particularly paper, which called for the use of special showcases, dedicated lighting, and appropriately controlled humidity levels and temperatures. The narrow specification of those conditions limited the possibilities for exhibiting contemporary art. The new building is boosting the scope of potential displays considerably, allowing the curators much greater freedom in terms of use of space and types of exhibition projects. Furthermore, the Gallery is fitted with infrastructure required for the preparation of exhibitions, as well as storage space, offices for curators, and dedicated parking spaces inside the building.

© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden

© Krzysztof Ingarden



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