“Exercises in Attention” by Alicja Bielawska and Teresa Starzec in the city space

As part of the cyclical project Standstill with Art, the creators of the exhibition Exercises in Attention present a part of their artistic oeuvre, not to be seen inside the Gallery, in the shop windows of bus stops in Kalisz. The matter of this open-air exhibition consists of reproductions of Teresa Starzec’s series of paintings from 2020, for which the background is an original fabric designed by the artist. Another part of the exhibition consists of a selection of drawings and sketches by Alicja Bielawska from, among others, the series Structures of Alternating Functions, as well as the photographic documentation of the installation titled ‘The Expansion of the Space of Everyday Life (The Gallery)’. “The installation is composed of silk fabric dyed with vegetable dyes and details of unglazed ceramics placed on a steel structure designed by the artist.

The works of Alicja Bielawska and Teresa Starzec, placed in urban space, are an extension of the exhibition entitled Exercises in Attention, which is presented inside the Jan Tarasin Art Gallery – curated by Paulina Olszewska.

You can read more about the creators of Exercises in Attention and the idea of the exhibition itself on our website.

Alicja Bielawska, born 1980 in Warsaw, where she currently lives.

A graduate of art history at the University of Warsaw and fine arts at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. In 2022, she defended her doctorate under the supervision of prof. Katarzyna Józefowicz at the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk.

She creates drawings, sculptures and installations using materials such as fabrics and ceramics. She writes poetry. Her works focus on the material sphere of everyday life and the relationship between objects, interiors and memories, touching on the issue of the relativity of perception and the role of memory. She is interested in shaping space and the context in which she places her works – the context of the place, architecture and the role of the recipient. She also introduces elements of choreography and performance into her works.

In 2015, she was nominated for the Views 2015 – Deutsche Bank Award, co-organized by Zachęta National Gallery of Art, and in 2016 for the Polityka’s Passport award in the visual arts category. She completed artistic residencies at Academie Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart in 2014-2015 and at Nida Art Colony in 2016.  The Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw commissioned her for site-specific works twice, in 2013 and 2018.

She represented Poland at the London Design Biennale 2021 with the exhibition Clothed House. Tuning into seasonal imagination, created in cooperation with CENTRALA and Aleksandra Kędziorek. Clothed House exhibition was subsequently shown in 2022 at the Design Biennale BIO 27 Super Vernaculars in Ljubljana and at the Lisbon Architecture Triennial 2022.

Her works are in the collections of such institutions as: Galeria Studio, Museum of Art in Łódź, Zachęta – National Gallery of Art in Warsaw, Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, Podlasie Society for the Encouragement of Fine Arts, Central Museum of Textiles in Łódź.

Teresa Starzec, born born in 1952 in Kraków, lives and works in Warsaw and Podlasie.

In the years 1972-78 she studied at the Faculty of Graphics and Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow. In 1975-76 she studied at the Faculty of Graphics of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Stockholm. She obtained her diploma in 1978 in the woodcut studio at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow. In 1985/86 she was on scholarship at Atelierhaus Worpswede (Germany). In 1991, together with her husband Andrzej Bielawski, she founded the Atelier Foundation – a non-governmental organization operating in the field of artistic education, which she runs to this day.

She creates oil paintings, watercolors, drawings, woodcuts, videos and photographs. In her work, the landscape is a reference and inspiration. Observing nature and studying a selected motif in the changing light of day and seasons is also associated with contemplation for the artist and has a metaphysical dimension for her. A single element of the landscape processed by the artist becomes an almost abstract form. Color is an important element of her language, using which she develops variations on selected motifs, creating extensive cycles of paintings, drawings and woodcuts.

Her works are in the collections of such institutions as: the National Museum in Krakow, the Drawing Room of the National Library in Warsaw, Zachęta – National Gallery of Art in Warsaw, the Museum of the Archdiocese of Warsaw, the District Museum in Przemyśl, the Worpswede Archive in Worpswede (Germany), the Country Council in Mariestad (Sweden), the British Museum in London (Great Britain) and in private collections.

The outdoor exhibition within the framework of the “Standstill with Art” project can be viewed in the shop windows of bus stops in the city of Kalisz in the following locations:

  • Parczewskiego (kierunek jazdy: plac Jana Pawła II, Łódzka, Warszawska)
  • Plac Jana Pawła II (kierunek jazdy: Stawiszyńska Skarszewska, Łódzka Warszawska)
  • Górnośląska Kaliniec (kierunek jazdy: Górnośląska Dworzec PKS)
  • Wyszyńskiego Słoneczna
  • Chopina II LO (kierunek jazdy: Rogatka)
  • Nowy Rynek Babina (kierunek jazdy: Chopina)
  • Śródmiejska Złoty Róg (kierunek jazdy: pl. Jana Pawła 2)

“Exercises in Attention” exhibition partner is Hestia Artistic Journey Foundation and STU ERGO Hestia S.A.
Funded by the Hestia Artistic Journey Foundation