City game | Łódź, december 2010 (final game 28.12.2010)
In the winter of 2010, the Museum of Art suggested organizing an action that would be close and relevant for people on the occasion of the exhibition “Memories of Life. Wladyslaw Strzeminski and the laws of art. “Strzeminski was a Polish artist, art theorist, pioneer of the constructivist avant-garde of the interwar period. And, of course, he was closely associated with Łódź, where he lived and worked for many years, and where he was also one of the initiators of the creation of the State Higher School of Fine Arts. However, due to some disagreements about the artist himself, we decided not to stick to his biography, but to focus strictly on his artistic activities instead. Contemporary abstract art is a complex subject which might well become a barrier for some people, too. Also, that winter started with frosts and much snow falling… So we were truly facing quite a serious challenge.
The program of manoeuvres envisions testing the skills of teamwork, abstract thinking and the struggle against socialist realism in all possible ways! May the avant-garde of abstraction triumph and may all the unlucky poor socialist realists disappear for good!
We decided that the plot would rather not go back in time, but instead we’d better bring to life a modern organization fighting for the ideals of the avant-garde art, which Strzeminski adhered to. It was led by the General Square. The military nature was due to the fact that the artist began his career as an officer in the Russian army, and his military career was interrupted because of a disability received during the First World War.
The issue of winter remained though. So, we divided the game into two phases. During the first phase, we published tasks daily, the team had 48 hours to complete them. The tasks were all pertaining to various stages of Strzeminski’s work – from architectural compositions to snow sculptures (because we had a lot of snow around then). The effects and results of the work and the process of the game we obtained from the participants in a digital form.
The second stage was the final one of the game, it was held on a cold Wednesday, December 28th. As it was stated in the message sent by General Square:
“The program of manoeuvres envisions testing the skills of teamwork, abstract thinking and the struggle against socialist realism in all possible ways! May the avant-garde of abstraction triumph and may all the unlucky poor socialist realists disappear for good!”
In short, as a soldiers’ saying goes: it worked!
Partners: Muzeum Sztuki w Łodzi
Coordinator: Michał Grelewski
Game designers: Vojislav Radojicic, Michal Grelewski,
Challenges: Jakub Tomczyk, Natalia Warzywoda, Maria Frankiewicz, Mateusz Pokora,
Animators: Natalia Warzywoda, Maria Czaińska, Mateusz Pokora, Przemysław Bogusławski, Magda Przymusiała
Graphic design: Ortografika
Filming: Maciej Bartosz Kruk
Consultant: Łukasz Biskupski
Actors: Vojislav Radojicic, Michal Grelewski, Przemysław Bogusławski.