Praga heritage is so complex and multifaceted that the team held several discussions on how to approach the Living Memory Exhibition (LME) – the way to present the tangible and intangible heritage, to connect the past with the future of work. The curatorial concept was a result of cooperation between the PragaLAB team with its Advisory Board, especially with Anna Tomaszewska, Adam Lisiecki and Magdalena Dopieralska, who joined the curatorial team as a result of an open call. Magda is a specialist on the history of Warsaw related to the working class and the Jewish community and is a curator at POLIN Museum in Warsaw .
In December 2021, the team launched an open call for participants of LME. The idea was to create an interactive exhibition, open to multitudes of interpreations, an exhibition which becomes complete only with viewers and guests who re-interpret and analyse what they see. The goal of the exhibition was to offer a space to a wide range of voices presenting visions for the future of Praga’s heritage. The planned activities were related to bolstering the role of the community and its participation in defining the cultural values of Praga.
The participants of the open call had to choose at least one of the topics they wanted to interpret through their work:
- WORKING CONDITIONS, in particular for creative and productive profession, the role of a physical space for workers, the importance of specific location within Praga for artistic and productive work;
- ENERGY understood both literally and metaphorically. The demand for energy, electrification, and currently digitisation is closely related to production and industry. At the same time, the workspaces are areas of creation and exchange of human, creative and social energy;
- WOMEN and their role as creators, producers, employees, as well as recipients of work and production, and consumers;
- LUXURY seen as a challenge for a sustainable and responsible economy. Luxury can be both a burden and a benchmark of high quality and durability for modern economies and cities. In the context of this exhibition the concept of luxury can be related to the issues of excess in art and in production. Guided tours around Praga as well as seeing or imagining individual elements of the exhibition will aim to provoke personal interpretations.
An invitation to apply was addressed to artists and craftsmen/craftswomen who wished to present their artwork/craftwork in a new context. The chosen place and the concept of an installation presenting the artwork/craftwork were also included in the applications.