Whenever I travel for conferences, I try and plan some extra time to see the city I’m visiting. I don’t always get as much time as I’d like, but I saw some really amazing stuff. Since I spent several semesters in the printmaking studio while studying graphic design, when I heard about the Poster Museum at Wilanów — the oldest of it’s kind in the world — I knew I had to visit.
It’s not a big museum, but the current exhibit is their 25th International Biennial so the work was pretty spectacular. The theme is ‘remediation’: taking familiar images and themes, and remixing or reusing them in new or different contexts. The exhibition raises an interesting and important line of thinking about how the popularity and impact of the poster is changing in the face of digital technology and the overwhelming presence of internet-connected mobile devices.
Oh, the books!
On a practical note, I was fortunate that the Poster Museum was less than ten minutes from Wednesday’s venue, so I didn’t miss The Big Announcement (I’ll get to that in greater detail in a day or two). Thankfully, despite an otherworldly level of tempation in the form of dozens of posters and books, I left with only a copy of the exhibit companion book. If I’d known I was going to bring home a fistful of conference posters I’m sure I would have gotten one or two more at the museum.
Older and newer
The next morning I took a slightly longer break to go explore the Old Town, and walked from there over across the river to the Eastern portion of the city to go find another Warsaw treasure: the Neon Museum. On the way there I passed by a beautiful cathedral (Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel and St. Florian the Martyr), and one of the most amazing murals I’ve ever seen.
Once I found the small complex of buildings where the Neon Museum was located, I had to kill a little time before it opened. Walk past it a short ways and you get to Wschodnia. Stop in for some soup, lunch, coffee, anything. It’s a beautiful space and the food was wonderful.
And then, the payoff:
Thanks for wandering Warsaw with me a bit. It’s really quite a remarkable city and I’m really happy I got to see it. (As always, if you did enjoy it, please hit the green heart and help others find it as well!)