“You Ain’t Going Nowhere” sounds both ominous and prohibitive, denying any chance of a future, leaving only “here and now.” But what if it is also a promise of a different locality, one in which “here” assumes new meanings? Where are we, in what way and how, if there is no alternative “there”?
One of the pandemic transformations of our lives is how we began to experience, perceive and define our immediate surroundings, both from an individual and social point of view. Hanging on to one place turned out to be not a choice, but a necessary part of a life lived in an increasingly shrinking field. The year 2020 drastically interrupted the European episode of free movement of people, bringing back questions about the importance of national borders and their role in the management of crises, not only biological, but also social and identity-related. However, if we look back beyond the last few decades, unfettered mobility appears to be an exception rather than the default state. A belief in the universal right to mobility, both spatially and socially, is not only a relatively new phenomenon, but also an illusory one. Self-determination, understood as the right to decide about one’s own fate or place of life, was not shared by many of our not-too-distant ancestors, for whom attachment to the land and inherited occupation was a given.
Researchers’ recent interest in rewriting the history of Poland from the perspective of the people – that is, through the experiences of the majority of inhabitants – is shared by many of the artists participating in the exhibition, forcing us to carefully and critically examine our “here and now.” A common element of numerous works, especially those created during the lockdown with the intention of displaying them during the Review, is the use of whatever was at hand – readily available resources, whether spatial and material, as well as drawing on the immediate historical and social contexts. What is important here is a reference not only to particular symbols or linguistic conventions, but also to sources of knowledge and interpretations that seem to elude universalising narratives or global codes.
The significance of the evoked gestures and concepts is revealed in the tension between that which is understandable through the prism of locality, however one wants to define it, and that which allows us to exceed it. An attempt to see and hear how the experiences of the last year or so have influenced our perception and understanding of our immediate surroundings must be to some extent based on the appreciation of stillness and isolation – not only as ways of protecting life, but also as attitudes that are in stark contrast to mechanisms that used to drive our everyday life, such as mobility, networking and crossing borders. At a time when the belief in the openness, accessibility and proximity of distant or at least “other” worlds relied entirely on the bandwidth of optical fibres and satellites, the actual, physical “here and now” turned out to be an unsolved mystery.
Since 1912, Linke-Hofmann-Werke has been the largest industrial plant in Wroclaw. The factory was created by combining smaller machinery and rolling stock factories (Gotffried Linke Railway Car Factory, Gustav Ruffer’s Machine Building Factory, Hofmann Brothers’ Railway Car Building Factory), whose beginnings date back to the mid-19th century. Before this merger took place, the owners of Linke’s factory started to move production to the village of Muchobór Mały near Wroclaw in 1895, where soon, several huge production halls were built and an impressive administrative building and other facilities on the area of 196 hectares. The factory employed up to 4 thousand workers, which also made it the largest employer in interwar Wrocław. It had a huge production capacity, becoming one of the largest suppliers of rolling stock in Europe. It produced literally everything that could move on the rails (locomotives, railway cars of various uses, cars for mountain railways, etc.), but also trams, tractors, machines for the food industry. The quality of products and timely execution of orders made the wagons and locomotives from Wrocław exported to many countries around the world. They also won numerous awards and distinctions at exhibitions and fairs. In June 1920, the factory produced a two thousandth locomotive. The management of the plant took great care to ensure good working conditions and social care for its employees. In their free time, they could also use the sports or holiday facilities belonging to the plant. During World War I, Linke-Hofmann-Werke produced LFG Roland C.II “Walfisch” reconnaissance planes, and during the following war, armoured railway cars and armouring components, including parts for V-2 rockets. In the 1940s, a labour camp AL Breslau II was created on the factory premises, where over 1000 forced labourers from Poland, France and the Czech Republic worked.
In 1945, the powerful Linke–Hofmann Werke rolling stock factory turned into a huge pile of rubble within just a few days. The first Polish group of workers that went into the factory estimated its destruction at 80%. However, the reconstruction of this largest production plant in Wrocław was a priority task. Its relaunch was of great importance for propaganda at the time. For Wrocław, it was a symbol of the city’s reconstruction and rebirth of local industry, and for the whole of Poland, a hope for rapid development of railway connections. In 1953, the factory produced the first post-war Polish electric locomotive and a year later, the first Polish electric traction car. The State Railway Car Factory (PAFAWAG) quickly became the pride of Wrocław and the whole of Silesia. Machines and vehicles from PAFAWAG made a great career. As before the war, they were exported to many countries. Until the 1980s, the Wrocław factory, employing 6,000 people, was the largest supplier of rolling stock in Europe. Yet, on 14 December 1981, no machines or production lines were started. People came, but instead of working, they joined the strike. In the united factories of Pafawag and Dolmel, the Regional Strike Committee of “Solidarity” trade unions for Lower Silesia had its headquarters. The committee members left the plant on the fifth day of martial law, when the halls were occupied by armed ZOMO units (Motorised Reserves of the Citizens’ Militia). Today, the former Linke-Hofmann-Werke/PAFAWAG under the name Bombardier Transporter Poland employs ten times fewer people than in its glory years, while at the same time being one of the few factories in the city that is over 100 years old and still operates in the same place.
🟠 25.06 FRIDAY
opening hours: noon–midnight
5-6:30 PM Historical tour of the PAFAWAG led by curator Ewa Pluta (The City Museum of Wrocław), start: from under the Dozamel building, Fabryczna St. 10
8-8:30 PM Ola Zielińska, Wera Bet It ain’t gonna fly. Talk show, performance (required prior registration)
9-10 PM Mateusz Kowalczyk Herba Polonica, performance
🟠 26.06 SATURDAY
opening hours: noon – midnight
1-2 PM Tour of the exhibition in Polish Sign Language led by curator Ewa Pluta (prior registration coordinated by Foundation Katarynka), start: Meeting Point*
2-3:30 PM Forum for Dialogue: You will join the meeting when someone lets you in! – geopolitical, cultural and social dimensions of artistic mobility, WSB University
3:30-5 PM “Let’s sing Pa-fa-wag!” soundwalk with Beata Kwiatkowska and Sławomir Wieczorek led by curator Daniel Brożek, start: Meeting Point*
4-5 PM Kid Art Walk! Tour of the exhibition for kids 6-12 y.o. led by Ewa Pluta, start: Meeting Point*
5-6:30 PM Forum for Dialogue: Your meeting attendees are waiting! – artistic residencies in lockdown and after, WSB University
8-9 PM Tour of the exhibition led by curator Anna Kołodziejczyk, start: Meeting Point*
10-11 PM Collective KWAS Night Club Euphoria, performance
🟠 27.06 SUNDAY
opening hours: noon- midnight
1-2 PM Tour of the exhibition with audio description led by curator Ewa Pluta (prior registration coordinated by Foundation Katarynka), start: Meeting Point*
2-3:30 PM Forum for Dialogue: I’m sharing, can everybody see my screen? – creation and participation in lockdown and the meanings of online, WSB University
4-5:30 PM Tour Sunday with Pafawag (event coordinated by Torypress), start: Meeting Point *
5-6:30 PM Forum for Dialogue: Your meeting will start soon! – possible futures, lessons and redesigns, WSB University
8-9 PM Tour of the exhibition led by curator Michał Bieniek, start: Meeting Point*
🟠 28.06 MONDAY
opening hours: noon- 10 PM
1-2 PM Tour in the Baby Art Walk! Series led by Aleksandra Jach, start: Meeting Point*
2-3:30 PM Culture for the masses? – lecture and meeting with Iwona Kałuża, WSB University
4-5 PM Tour in the Senior Art Walk! Series led by curator Ewa Pluta, start: Meeting Point*
5-6:30 PM Forum for Dialogue: Access granted! – info-sessions for artists, curators and other cultural agents, WSB University
8-9 PM Tour of the exhibition in English led by curator Małgorzata Miśniakiewicz, start: Meeting Point*
🟠 29.06 TUESDAY
opening hours: noon-10 PM
5-6:30 PM Meeting with publishing house Torypress, WSB University
8-9 PM Tour of the exhibition led by curator Małgorzata Miśniakiewicz, start: Meeting Point*
On Saturday and Sunday, between 11:00-12:00, there will be fade out sound installations and limited light and acoustic stimuli. If you have any question please send email to email@example.com
*MEETING POINT is located at the car park in the immediate vicinity of the Review Area.
You ain’t going nowhere
Kotłownia, ul. Fabryczna 14, Wrocław
We invite you to submit proposals of art projects for the 19th edition of SURVIVAL Art Review, which will take place from 25 to 29 June 2021 in the boiler room of the former Pafawag factory (previously Linke-Hofmann-Werke). “You ain’t going nowhere” is the slogan to which the proposed applications should refer.
When submitting a proposal, we ask you to take into account the character of the available spaces; due to the large volume of open spaces and the difficulty in separating a room for individual projects, we are interested in site-specific proposals that take a close look at the particular place. We also consider displaying art projects outside of the building.
The deadline for submitting proposals expires on 14 February 2021. Proposals can be sent by completing the form available on www.survival.art.pl and the attachments to the following e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org. The SURVIVAL curators will then choose artworks to be presented in the chosen venue.
The curatorial team consisting of: Michał Bieniek, Daniel Brożek, Anna Kołodziejczyk, Małgorzata Miśniakiewicz, Ewa Pluta verified and selected the applications sent to the OPEN CALL of the 19th edition of the Survival Art Review.
individual artists: Aleksander Baszyński, Tymek Bryndal, Seecum Cheung, Paweł Czekański, Weronika Gołaś, Jeroen Jongeleen, Kamil Kak, Daniel Kotowski, Jan Kowal, Mateusz Kowalczyk, Adam Kozicki, Paweł Kulczyński, Beata Kwiatkowska, Piotr Macha, Katarzyna Malejka, Robert Mathy, Piotr Tadeusz Mosur, Małgorzata Mycek, Adam Nehring, Iza Opiełka, Zofia Pałucha, Zuza Piekoszewska, Berenika Pyza, Anna Raczyńska, Maryna Sakowska, Radek Sirko, Kuba Stępień, Szymon Szewczyk, Alicja Szpakowska, Joanna Tochman, Viktoriia Tofan
teams: Zuza Banasińska i Agnieszka Mastalerz, Maciej Cholewa i Justyna Plec, Borys Jaźnicki i Marcin Kamiński, Martyna Modzelewska i Franciszek Drażba, Ola Zielińska i Wera Bet, kolektyw KWAS
We would like to thank all the artists for the submitted applications.
SURVIVAL 19. Art Review| Nigdzie stąd nie pójdziecie / You ain’t going nowhere
Fabryczna 14, Wrocław
Curators: Michał Bieniek, Anna Kołodziejczyk, Małgorzata Miśniakiewicz, Ewa Pluta
Sound Art Forum curator: Daniel Brożek
Organizer: Art Transparent Foundation / http://arttransparent.org/en
Co-Organizer: The Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Art and Design in Wroclaw / https://www.asp.wroc.pl
Survival Art Review id co-financed by the Municipality of Wrocław / www.wroclaw.pl
Partner: Pracownia Projektowa Macków / www.mackow.pl