Nestled in the heart of Poland, Wrocław emerges as a captivating city that seamlessly weaves history, architecture, and a vibrant arts scene into its very fabric. With its visually stunning landscapes and a thriving Market Square pulsating with life, Wrocław stands as a testament to cultural richness. Join Culture Trip as we embark on a journey through Wrocław’s artistic institutions, delving into the realm of contemporary art. Immerse yourself in the creative spirit of the city as we unveil the top ten galleries and museums, where local talent intertwines with heritage, offering a mesmerizing glimpse into the artistic tapestry of Wrocław. From avant-garde exhibitions to thought-provoking installations, these cultural destinations promise to leave you inspired and in awe of the city’s artistic prowess.
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Galeria Awangarda is located in the former Hatzfeld palace, built by the architect of the Brandeburg Gate in Berlin and consequently destroyed during the Second World War. It is probably the most avant-garde gallery in Wroclaw and Silesia, often showcasing controversial exhibitions touching on social and political issues. The former historical building that expands over 1,000 square meters hosts permanent exhibitions of modern artworks and ceramics but also new Polish and European artists in every field possible: visual art, industrial design, advertising photography, theatre and film, VJ and street art projects.
Established by the Wroclaw municipality in 1991, Galeria Miejska promotes Polish art in Wroclaw and Wroclaw art abroad. Apart from presenting works of fine art, the aim of the gallery is to showcase the existence of various forms of art and other areas of creativity, the beauty and the freedom of it all. Its director, Miroslaw Jasinski, a diplomat and an art historian, has also been overseeing the publishing of the City Gallery Library series, which will cover subjects such as the theory of art and aesthetics. The venue has also established a Foundation with the aim of finding support and promotion from patrons and lovers of the arts, showcasing its dedication to creativity.
WRO Art Center
WRO Art Center is housed in a partly renovated-partly new building, which used to be the first coffee roasting plant in Europe at the end of the 19th century. First opened in 2008 by the WRO Center for Media Art Foundation, an independent organisation focusing on contemporary art and new media, the gallery offers a steady programme of exhibitions by Polish and foreign artists, concerts, screenings and lectures. There are research facilities where artists can use new technologies to develop their projects, while the Media Reading Room provides access to Polish and international media art. WRO Art Center organises eight in-house exhibitions per year, with some of the most notable ones being by Miroslaw Balka, Jetzt, Igor Krenz and Wolf Kahlen.
Galeria M was founded in 1997 and is currently located in two venues, one on Stare Jatki Street and one in an 18th century guardhouse building on Swidnicka Street. The venue boasts a permanent exhibition of 70 artists including Krzysztof Skorczewski, Danka Jarowska and younger artists such as Monica Cichon and Aleksandra Makowska. Organising exhibitions with a focus on painting, sculpture, glass and ceramic arts, Galeria M also publishes visual materials such as catalogues, cards, invitations and calendars and runs activities such as interior design workshops.
A gallery created to promote young talent, it is called DNA to show the uniqueness and complexity of every artwork, whatever its medium and creator, displayed in the gallery. Situated in the heart of Wroclaw, DNA is a real breeding ground for young artists who create beautiful works, some of which have even been exhibited across Europe. Past projects include young art auctions, exhibitions focusing on art by women, a Sky Graffiti Contest, a trip to the London Art Fair and, most recently, openings of exhibitions by Lenka Kubica and Marcin Painta openings.
The main museum for contemporary art in Wroclaw is located in an impressively restored old air shelter west of the Old Town. The above-ground bunker has become an elevator which brings visitors to the café of the museum on the sixth floor, offering a great view of the Wroclaw skyline. The surreal atmosphere of the science fiction-like building continues inside with the exhibited artefacts, which do not steer away from controversy. These include a human body made from pubic hair and two baby dolls with the provocative title You can shave the baby.
Museum of Architecture
Beautifully located within a former monastery and Benedictine church from the 15th century, the unique Museum of Architecture in Wroclaw is home to permanent exhibitions of art nouveau pieces, elements of mediaeval and modern architecture and the largest collection of stained glass in Poland. Showcasing numerous items recovered from damage during the Second World War, as well as a collection of manuscripts and drawings, the Museum of Architecture is an unusually comprehensive institution with numerous hidden gems and unexpected finds.
Museum of Post and Telecommunications
One of the first high-rise buildings in the city, the former Central Post Office of Wroclaw was built in 1929 and today houses the unique Museum of Post and Telecommunications. If you want to know how people communicated before the era of the Internet and mobile phones, visit the six exhibitions of the museum, among which are the fascinating History of Polish Post, a graphically stunning collection of Polish stamps, as well as a radio and TV exhibit. Old telephones, mailboxes, early telegram machines, uniforms and early computers are all displayed here, offering a valuable insight into an era gone-by.
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