Temporary exhibition 2023

Janina Janicka-Grabowska “Urban Tales”

Exhibition curator: Roman Lewandowski


“In my everyday life I am a simple cog in the urban machine, but from time to time, being in a foreign city, I turn into a walker and a spectator of the show. I revive my sense of smell, notice colours and find time to reflect on the history of a place. Searching for an answer to the question of what makes people live in a city, I came across Italo Calvino’s book: ‘Invisible Cities’ in which the author presents the city in the context of memory, desires, signs of language, places of exchange… This book completely turned my attention away from the previous way of recognising a city by its architectural forms, to observing human relationships. However, my love for geometry, rhythm and the incredible energy of place has always remained with me – this is what I decided to pour onto canvas. Moreover, the process of painting is an attempt to understand the profound structure of the city. Unfortunately, lately the urban landscape has become filled with corporate signs, and the dominant feature is light advertising. The mirrored facades of buildings reflect distorted, dysmorphic architectural forms, because the city is hyper real and is supposed to guarantee ecstasy and an experience similar to that seen in a computer dimension. Finally, it seems that it is not the form, but the dynamics and the event that give character to the city – it is ‘kinetic’, growing in the form of a rhizome, which makes it difficult to walk through it and reach the destination. I invite you to view my nostalgic paintings about cities that have enthralled me with their distinctiveness and magic.”


Photo. Przemysław Jendroska

Janina Janicka-Grabowska – born in 1957 in Bytom. From 1976 to 1982, she studied at the Faculty of Medicine of the Silesian Medical Academy in Zabrze. Defended her doctorate in 1987. For 32 years, she has been in charge of her Clinic, where she practises as a plastic surgeon. In the meantime, she has worked in several hospitals and completed internships abroad in the field of plastic surgery. In 2020, she graduated from the Faculty of Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice. She completed her diploma thesis in the Painting Studio of Prof. Zbigniew Blukacz. She has been painting since childhood. In the last few years, her works have been presented in numerous art galleries.