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Polish Contemporary Art

Warsaw  |  Poland  | 

Polish Contemporary Art

Michał Borowik explains the idea behind his collection and how it came to be.

My collection, for most of the years of its creation, was based on sacrifices – says Michał Borowik, founder of the Borowik Collection. Also in the sense that I neither want nor can have “everything”. It is based on very subjective, personal criteria and specific emotionality. I buy ambitious art that is close to me, that I like, that inspires, that is important and intriguing. I am not interested in aesthetic shells that serve as decorations or are only fashionable. I am close to, among other things, the work on memory and the way of perceiving. How much we are actually able to see and how far our sight reaches.

I believe that we live in interesting times, but at the same time difficult, anonymous, large-format, and corporate. These are times of post-truth, fake news, crises, overproduction, uncertainty, conflicts, pandemics, and at the same time, credit routine, restrictions, boredom, and insensitivity. Each of us tries to find ourselves, our role and our destiny in this. The collection is my form of expression, my personal commentary.

One of the works, a photograph by Mateusz Sadowski entitled Looking to the End, in a special way encourages me to cross the boundaries of perception, to reach beyond the horizon of what is shown to us. Thanks to new technologies, we are more up-to-date, “omniscient”, but paradoxically our field of vision narrows and polarises. We look at ourselves in our own digital reflections.

The Borowik Collection also poses a fundamental question about the roots, our origins, ancestors, defined boundaries, and traditions towards which we must find ourselves. Hardly anyone remembers that the practice of collecting has a turbulent history in Poland, rich in fantastic projects and spectacular acts of looting. Hostilities and occupation caused the dispersion or complete destruction of many collections, and the real opportunity opened only after 1989. Today, I ask: What image of our times will we leave to others?

More than 10 years ago, I explored the boundary between photography and painting, the relationship between the eye, the camera and the surface of the painting. I discovered Czułość Gallery and became fascinated with what Witek Orski does. These were his photographs that I was running with on the rooftop of the Sofitel Victoria hotel working on the first photoshoots for magazines, to infect others with my passion for collecting. At the same time, I wondered what modern photography is in the age of social media and in view of the fact that through Instagram we have posted the most photos in the history of mankind.

Other discoveries, from over five years ago, are the artists creating the current Potencja Gallery: Karolina Jabłońska, Tomek Kręcicki, Cyryl Polaczek. Currently, I devote a lot of attention to surrealism, women and spirituality in art. I am discovering the omitted part of the Kraków Group and the phenomenal artist Janina Kraupe, who, in her work, immerses herself in theosophy, observations of the micro and macrocosm, stars and the world as the sum of everything. All modernism grew out of theosophy, but the Bauhaus current has in some way hidden the theosophical trend and I am trying to rediscover it. My most recent acquisitions are works by the Ukrainian artist Nikita Kadan and Lera Dubitskaya from Belarus.

For more on the Borowik Collection visit this online exhibition and read this interview in the BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors.

Lera Dubitskaya, New Beast, 2021, oil on paper, 21 x 14 cm
Lera Dubitskaya, New Beast, 2021, oil on paper, 21 x 14 cm
Lera Dubitskaya, Friend of Boris, 2021, oil on paper, 14,7 x 9,8 cm
Lera Dubitskaya, Friend of Boris, 2021, oil on paper, 14,7 x 9,8 cm
Lera Dubitskaya, Kill Me, 2021, oil on paper, 14 x 10,5 cm
Lera Dubitskaya, Kill Me, 2021, oil on paper, 14 x 10,5 cm
Karolina Jabłońska, Grill, 2018, oil on canvas, 200 x 250 cm; Paweł Matyszewski; Paweł Eibel
Karolina Jabłońska, Grill, 2018, oil on canvas, 200 x 250 cm; Paweł Matyszewski; Paweł Eibel
Karolina Jabłońska, Girl under the table, 2019, oil on canvas, 140 x 140 cm; Jakub Julian Ziółkowski
Karolina Jabłońska, Girl under the table, 2019, oil on canvas, 140 x 140 cm; Jakub Julian Ziółkowski
Nikita Kadan, Palace of Youth [Waiting], 2021, oil paint on canvas, 160 x 195 cm
Nikita Kadan, Palace of Youth [Waiting], 2021, oil paint on canvas, 160 x 195 cm
Nikita Kadan, Poet I, 2020, oil paint on canvas, 190 x 150 cm
Nikita Kadan, Poet I, 2020, oil paint on canvas, 190 x 150 cm
Nikita Kadan, Poet II, 2020, oil paint on canvas, 200 x 145 cm
Nikita Kadan, Poet II, 2020, oil paint on canvas, 200 x 145 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations I, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations I, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations II, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm.
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations II, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm.
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations III, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations III, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations IV, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations IV, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations V, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations V, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations VI, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations VI, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations VII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations VII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations VIII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations VIII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations IX, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations IX, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations X, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations X, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XI, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XI, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XIII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XIII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XIV, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XIV, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XV, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XV, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XVI, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XVI, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XVII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XVII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XVIII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Janina Kraupe, Transmutations XVIII, 1984, oil paint on canvas, 104 x 70 cm
Monika Misztal, She (from the “Porno-Erotic” cycle), 2020, oil paint on canvas, 50 x 60 cm
Monika Misztal, She (from the “Porno-Erotic” cycle), 2020, oil paint on canvas, 50 x 60 cm
Monika Misztal, Face (self portrait from the “Porno-Erotic” cycle), 2019, oil paint on canvas, 60 x 50 cm
Monika Misztal, Face (self portrait from the “Porno-Erotic” cycle), 2019, oil paint on canvas, 60 x 50 cm
Monika Misztal, Tales of love and despair (self portrait), 2019, oil paint on canvas, 80 x 100 cm
Monika Misztal, Tales of love and despair (self portrait), 2019, oil paint on canvas, 80 x 100 cm
Agata Słowak, Love (self portrait), 2019, oil on canvas, 140 x 120 cm; Paweł Matyszewski; Jakub Julian Ziółkowski
Agata Słowak, Love (self portrait), 2019, oil on canvas, 140 x 120 cm; Paweł Matyszewski; Jakub Julian Ziółkowski
Agata Słowak, Self portrait with grater, 2019, oil on canvas, 200 x 160 cm; Paweł Matyszewski; Paweł Żukowski; Jan Możdżyński
Agata Słowak, Self portrait with grater, 2019, oil on canvas, 200 x 160 cm; Paweł Matyszewski; Paweł Żukowski; Jan Możdżyński
Katarzyna Górna, Fuck me, Fuck you, Peace (triptych), 2000, 120 x 82 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Fuck me, Fuck you, Peace (triptych), 2000, 120 x 82 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Madonna (triptych), 1997, 120 x 82 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Madonna (triptych), 1997, 120 x 82 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Kasie — Niteczki (with Katarzyna Kozyra), 1993, gelatin silver print, barit paper, 27 x 40 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Kasie — Niteczki (with Katarzyna Kozyra), 1993, gelatin silver print, barit paper, 27 x 40 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Kasie — Niteczki (with Katarzyna Kozyra), 1993, gelatin silver print, barit paper, 27 x 40 cm
Katarzyna Górna, Kasie — Niteczki (with Katarzyna Kozyra), 1993, gelatin silver print, barit paper, 27 x 40 cm

Photos: Borowik Foundation © all rights reserved