culture in Poznań

Culture

Crinoline: Fashion's Most Magnificent Disaster

When lovely Woman stoops to Crinoline,

she ceases to be Woman, and becomes a Monster.

"Crinoline for Gentlemen". Punch, 31st October 1857, 183.

Crinoline was a truly vital part of the clothing of nineteenth-century upper-class women. Their distinctive bell-shaped dresses supported on metal cages or whalebone petticoats can easily be spotted today in numerous period paintings, early photographs and costume movies. The trend, which originated in the 1840s, ran strong until the 1860s when dresses gradually grew flatter at the front and on the sides while being more protruding in the back, decorated lavishly with successive layers of fabric.

Malta returns to its roots

This year's Malta festival is going to comprise predominantly outdoor events, which is good news for all those who have dreamed to see it return to the original formula of open street theatre that gets intimate with its audience. And yet, the Festival will continue to cater to all those who have followed its Idioms, or leitmotivs, over the years, that identify and reflect key trends in contemporary theatre. This year's edition reconciles both visions.

The sun and water

Dear Parent and/or Carer! We are well aware that for more than a year now you have been spending more time with your children than you ever expected and, frankly, probably ever even signed up for. What made things worse is that, for most of this time, you have been cooped up in your home. Schools and cultural institutions did their best to provide respite. However, the best they could do under the circumstances was to offer your kids activities that involved even more computer screen time. This severely tested the limits of your children's attention spans. Luckily, the spring has come and it is time to head for the great outdoors! Where exactly should I go?, you might ask. Here are a few ideas we have been able to pull together.

The Poznań Zoo

150 years ago, in a train station restaurant in the village of Jeżyce near Poznań, a bunch of regulars thought of a highly unusual way to mark its owner's 50th birthday: they gave him "living gifts". These were mainly farm animals: a pig, a ram, a goat, a hen, a duck, a goose and a rabbit, and a few more exotic species such as a peacock, a trained bear and a monkey. They all ended up living in the restaurant's garden. Such were the origins of the Poznań Zoo.

Museums reopen - for the second time

Museums and art galleries are again open to the public. As covid cases decline, restrictions are eased allowing some cultural institutions to return. Most museums reopened on Tuesday, 4 May, with a number of others planning to reopen within days.

Builders of sound

Passed down through generations, the art of violin-making is a tradition that lives on and runs strong throughout the world. A reminder of that comes with the next edition of the Henryk Wieniawski International Violin Making Competition.

Palm House history

Even in the midst of a cold winter, there is a place you can visit for a taste of tropical jungle or hot desert. Couples date there, teachers hold biology classes, parents bewilder their children there with the sight of translucent fish and colourful parrots. The place, the Poznań Palm House, is celebrating its 110th anniversary this April!

Finally performing at home!

At the end of last year, Polski Teatr Tańca (the Polish Dance Theatre) moved into its new location at ul. Taczaka 8. Pandemic permitting, the first audience members will be invited over in April. The inauguration of the new Poznań stage - a long-awaited home for a theatre that has gone homeless for nearly half a century - is scheduled to coincide with the International Dance Day on 29 April.

Exhibitions during times of plague

It has been over a year now since the pandemic first struck us. For a big chunk of that time, museums and galleries remained shut. They were also in lockdown at the time this text was written, with slim prospects of being reopened any time soon, certainly not without some form of restrictions. It is nevertheless worth your while to keep track of the exhibitions that remain accessible and at least click to support Poznań's local exhibition organisations.

Chernobyl: A chronicle of the present

New Year's Eve in Chernobyl, a tour of the Zone, a game, a novel and a film either inspired by the events of April 26, 1986 or just set in the apocalyptic Exclusion Zone. The significant thread that weaves through and gives meaning to all of the above is Chernobyl and it has been wholeheartedly received by pop culture. In the process of embracing it, did we forget what it really was?

The Two Stories

Marta Buczkowska and Mateusz Kiszka, authors of the book of photographs A Synthesis of Discovery. A Photographic Splicing of Poznań's Histories, interviewed by Karol Szymkowiak

Display of prominence

Polish 19th-century painting is unique indeed. While the art produced during the country's occupation was thoroughly patriotic, it was also highly diverse, both in its form and in the themes taken up by the artists. As a consequence, works from the period invoke all sorts of reflection: on art, on the role of the artist and on the stances taken by individuals and society during challenging times.

75 years of delight

At the age of eight, Agnieszka Duczmal resolved to take her place behind the conductor's stand, in what heretofore has been the exclusive domain of men. She did this on impulse, galvanised by a symphonic poem by Richard Strauss she had heard at the Poznań Philharmonic. Ever since, her childhood dream has become reality. This year in January, the artist celebrated her 75th birthday. Having spent years appearing on the world's most prominent musical stages, having recorded magnificent albums and created a one-of-a-kind orchestra, she is celebrated as one of the greats of her field.

The Automotive Museum coming back with a bang

A collection of over a hundred remarkable cars, bicycles, mopeds and motorcycles will be on view in Hall 2 at the Poznań International Fair as Poznań's celebrated Automotive Museum is making its comeback. The Museum is being moved from its previous location under the Kaponiera rounabout where it remained until its renovation a few years ago.

Konkurs 30/30 is on!

A call for entries for the latest edition of Konkurs 30/30 (Contest 30/30) was announced on 15 February. The aim is to select the best thirty album cover designs made in 2020. The artwork will be on view in the Contest's summer display to be held in the celebrated Courtyard Gallery (Galeria na Dziedzińcu) of Poznań's Old Brewery.

The Poznań Fotoplastykon

The Poznań Fotoplastykon is one relic of the past whose life has never been easy. Throughout its existence of over a century, it repeatedly changed hands and sites to finally settle down in the Arkadia building. To learn more about its history, it is best to revert to the time when the stereoscopic photograph craze first took off...

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