Illegibility. Palimpsests

Illegibility. Palimpsests

The phenomenon of illegibility and the accumulation of layers of script is the subject of the new temporary exhibition at the Pan Tadeusz Museum.
Most of us have experienced writing down a note which is later illegible, even to ourselves; it has occurred to almost everyone that we failed to decipher someone else’s scribbling, or have come across a system of signs that we couldn’t understand. How do we feel then: irritated, helpless, powerless? Or perhaps, in those conditions, when the desire for meaning evades us so blatantly, do we discover perception of different kind, where the script becomes a material phenomenon in itself, a fascinating ornament, a code without information? We see scripts which are visible, but not legible.
The notion of a palimpsest appears to be closely related to illegibility. This term describes a manuscript written on previously used material. A palimpsest involves layers of overwritten script, in which the old layers eventually begin to reappear from below the new, making the writing less legible, if at all.
Curator certainly describes the exhibition at the Pan Tadeusz Museum in Wrocław as a palimpsest in itself, because it was developed on the basis of the first “layer”, namely the exhibition “Illegibility. The Contexts of Script”, which took place at the Art Stations Foundation by Grażyna Kulczyk in Poznań (February – May 2016).


Yet the nature of a palimpsest involves a continuous process, hence the exhibition in Wrocław carries a different title and includes an expanded set of works.
The works collected at the Illegibility – Palimpsests exhibition are located not only in the temporary exhibition space, but also seamlessly infiltrate the rooms of the permanent exhibition at the Pan Tadeusz Museum.

Muzeum Pana Tadeusza „Under the Golden Sun” Tenement Rynek 6, 50-106 Wrocław
  • Opening: Friday, 16 December 2016, 6 pm
  • Exhibition open: 17 December 2016 – 30 March 2017
artists: Andrzej Bednarczyk, Jan Berdyszak, Marcin Berdyszak, Irma Blank, Witosław Czerwonka, Małgorzata Dawidek, Irmina Felińska, Katarzyna Giełżyńska, Krzysztof Gliszczyński, Roma Hałat, Jakub Jasiukiewicz, Sasaguchi Kazz, Hacer Kıroğlu, Piotr Korzeniowski, Andrzej Leśnik, Zbigniew Libera, Navid Nuur, Franciszek Orłowski, Michał Martychowiec, Ewa Partum, Ireneusz Pierzgalski, Sophia Pompéry, Ketty La Rocca, Antoni Starczewski, Tamás St. Auby, Zbigniew Sałaj, Andrzej Szewczyk, Jan Tarasin, Endre Tót, Marian Warzecha, Marek Wasilewski, Bogdan Wojtasiak
curator: dr hab. Marta Smolińska

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