Gallery on the Eve of the 21st Century

Gallery on the Eve of the 21st Century

The Platán Gallery came into being on the turn of the 20th and the 21st century, in a year ever so important in the history of Polish-Hungarian relations, on the 60th anniversary of the opening of the Polish Institute on May 24, 1939, sixty years after the outbreak of world war II and the arrival of the first Polish refugees in Hungary. The fact that the gallery of the Polish Institute could come into existence is the legacy of artists, academic and cultural institutions, and the traditionally good relationship of the Polish and Hungarian society.

Hungarian artists started to build connections with the Polish galleries already in the '60s and that was when the Hungarian critics became keenly interested in Polish art. As a consequence in 1973, on the 500th anniversary of the birth of the great Polish astronomer, Mikołaj Kopernik, or Nicolaus Copernicus, the Polish Institute organised a large exhibition of Hungarian artist under the title "In Memoriam Kopernik (Kopernikusz Emlékkiállítás) in the hall of the Budapest University of Technology.

Exhibitions of Polish artists, the debuts of Józef Szajna (Ernst Museum), Wladyslaw Hasior and Magdalena Abakanowicz (Műcsarnok / Kunsthalle Budapest) in the '70s and '80s were accompanied by a vivid interest from the side of Hungarian artists and critics, but the art-loving general public, as well.

 

 

Barbara Wiechno

Director of the Polish Institue, 1997 – 2001

Warsaw, March 2010