Joanna Rajkowska
Joanna Rajkowska

Joanna Rajkowska (born 1968) is a Polish artist based in London, working mostly in public space. She produces objects, architectural projects, geological phantasies, excavation sites and ephemeral actions that are essential parts of her widely discussed public projects. Many of them have not been realized, but they work as collective utopias.
She critically engages with the legacy, politics and aesthetics of land art and employs the strategy of unfamiliarity as a political tool whilst focusing on the body and language as the foundations of social relationships. Her works often function as social sculptures in which collective memory, tensions and desires might be manifested as public monuments interwoven into the urban tissue. Activating layers of meanings (both historical and ideological), they provoke and reveal lines of conflicts, but also serve as platforms for dialogue.
Because Rajkowska’s works materialize through 'urban legends', press-cuttings, gossip and media debates, their form is always 'unfinished', so there is a possibility they will evolve and mutate beyond the artist’s initial intentions. Her public projects include commissions by CCA Ujazdowski Castle (2007, Oxygenator, Poland), Trafo Gallery (2008, Airways, Hungary), Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw (2009, Ravine, Poland), The Showroom (2010, Chariot, UK), British Council (2010, Benjamin in Konya, Turkey), 7th Berlin Biennale (2012, Born in Berlin, Germany), Royal Society of Arts, Citizen Power Peterborough programme’s Arts and Social Change, Arts Council England (2012, project in progress, The Peterborough Child, UK) and Frieze Projects 2012 (2012, Forcing a Miracle, UK). As well as commissions, she has realized a number of partisan public projects, most notably Greetings from Jerusalem Avenue in Warsaw, 2002, a project that became a landmark of the city and shaped the set of unique methods Rajkowska employs while working with people and places. Her artwork has been presented in the UK, Germany, Poland, France, Switzerland, Brazil, Sweden, USA, Palestine and Turkey, amongst others.


Books by Joanna Rajkowska

Where the Beast is Buried

Dec 2013

The first English-language book about Joanna Rajkowska and her unique practice of work in public space, in extremely diverse cultures and geographies.

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