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20.07. | Exhibition: PUNKS PRINCES AND PROTESTS
October 24 @ 10:30 am - November 9 @ 8:30 pm
Exhibition: PUNKS PRINCES AND PROTESTS: The Chronicles of Feliks Topolski RA
Partnership Anglo-Polish Cultural Exchange and Foundation Topolski Memoir
Located in the Studio of Feliks Topolski on Southbank, exhibition „Punks, princes and protests:
the Chronicles of Feliks Topolski RA”. some of the most Anglo-Polish reporters evocative and historically relevant work, documenting London’s social, cultural and ethnic diversity over the years. As an outspoken critic of the “world of mercantile art”, Topolski’s non-conformist views distinguished him from many of his peers. Topolski relied on artistic independence from artistic institutions as a means
fulfilling its commitment to cultural democracy. He developed two of his available, non-commercial
projects – Kronika Topolski’s newspaper and immersive painting-painting-painting autobiography installation “Diary of the Century” – from Southbank, thanks in large part to the independence granted to him by the Studio. The Studio itself was its creative and social core and it doubled as an egalitarian exhibition space – which allowed it to “skip the art scene” and exist as something more than a traditional Renaissance artisan who
“worked from the back and showed from the front” “before art middlemen came along.”
This exhibition inherently addresses the broader issues of representation of émigré artists in Britain, once again shining a spotlight on Topolski’s excellent work that has been unfairly judged to have fallen out of public memory. Topolski tirelessly documented the changing social, cultural and political currents of the 20th century, traveling around the world but always returning to London, and from 1951 in his Studio underneath the Hungerford Bridge. The area has changed tremendously since then, but the Studio remains an example of a bygone era of bohemian, progressive and independent London. This is the first opportunity to open a unique space for the curatorial exhibition of Topolski’s works taken from the archives, restoring the Studio’s democratic exhibition status, as well as a place of independent thought and the promotion of reportage as art and artistic practice. As a South Bank character becomes increasingly commercial, it is more important than ever to establish and protect authentic and independent artistic and educational spaces that cater to a diverse UK audience. The studio has always been a guardian of these values. Feliks was present here.
Curators: Julia Griffin and Lucien Topolski