THREADS of a NEW SPIRITUALITY
5 | 12 June 2022
Basilica di San Celso, Corso Italia 39 Milan
Curated by Marta Kowalewska and Elisabetta Mero
In collaboration with Fuori Salone, Central Museum of Textiles in Łódź, Poland, LAQ – lartquotidien and Santuario di Santa Maria dei Miracoli presso San Celso
With the patronage of Istituto polacco of Rome
On the occasion of Design Week 2022 BASILICA DI SAN CELSO is pleased to welcome THREADS OF A NEW SPIRITUALITY, a selection of the most significant and recent works of textile art by the polish artists and designers duo KOSMOS PROJECT. The show is realized in collaboration with FUORI SALONE, Central Museum of Textiles in Łódź, Poland, Santuario di Santa Maria dei Miracoli presso San Celso and LAQ – lartquotidien with the patronage of the the Polish Institute of Rome.
THREADS OF A NEW SPIRITUALITY presents the recent researches and intuitions by Ewa Bochen and Maciej Jelski. The synthesis of their ideas is the image of anthropomorphic masks that emerge from wool handmade tapestries.
The show is the occasion to go into their vision that promotes an idea of recovering the natural connection between human life and nature. The masks, in dialogue with the figurative animals of the Romanesque capitals, represents a call to wake up in an historical period where we need to be aware of our spiritual power and active to realize a better environment as soon as possible. Spirituality is the perfect medium in order to try to connect all the part of our system, textile is a metaphor of this interlaced connection.
“From primeval times, man has been inextricably linked with nature, he has been part of its rhythm, has succumbed to it and participated in its creative processes.
Along with its development, he became more and more distant from the world of plants and animals. Man protected himself from nature, turned its laws so that he could feel safe losing the ability to read its signs and the attitude to respect other species.
This process, however, caused the isolation of man from the primary, subcutaneously sensed needs of existence in the harmony of the universe.
But the knowledge acquired by the ancestors is still somewhere in the subconscious. It comes to life when we look at the monumental mountain massif, a ray of light breaking through the branches, or the mysterious darkness of the forest.
Is it possible to regain connection with our animality, with what is deeply rooted in us? Is it possible to create a world of respect for all living creatures in the way that it will be acceptable for modern man?“
SPIRITUALITY and TEXTILES seem to be the contemporary perfect “media” to promote new values in order to create a new idea of collaboration and of peaceful coexistence.
KOSMOS PROJECT is a design studio set up by Ewa Bochen and Maciej Jelski. In philosophy, cosmos is an orderly or harmonious system, the opposite of chaos. That´s where the name of the group originates. Kosmos Project´s inspiration comes from observation of relationship between the civilized and the wild. Designers believe that this two separate worlds can coexists harmoniously. Their design approach is build on conviction that our environment determines our attitudes. From this point of view the way we create design objects is very important. Things that surrounds us have great impact on our behavior and relations. It doesn’t only concern the physical part of our being, but also and maybe mainly the mental aspect. Designers strongly believe that modern design needs to focus on human spirituality as the way to break with dehumanized life. Each project is meticulously thought through, with great care and attention to concept, material, proportions. The portfolio of the group includes both industrial projects and unique pieces for galleries.
MARTA KOWALEWSKA is an art historian, critic and chief curator of the Central Museum of Textiles in Łódź. Main curator of the 16th and 17th International Triennial of Tapestry in Łódź. She also has curated a large number of exhibitions, among others “Metamorphism”, “Rebellion of the Matter”, she is co-curator of the exhibitions: “Antoni Starczewski. The Idea of Linear notation”, “We are Textile Culture Net!”, “100 Flags for the centenary of the Polish women’s suffrage”, and others. Co-editor of the book “Weave Ideas”, academic consultant of the exhibition “The Splendour of Textiles” and co-editor of the catalogue accompanying the exhibition. Author of over 70 articles, critical texts and interviews on the pages of the professional books and journals. She is co-author of the book “From Tapestry to Fiber Art. The Lausanne Biennials 1962-1995”. Member of the jury of international exhibitions of textile art. Board member of the international association European Textile Network, chairperson of the Marta Magdalena Abakanowicz-Kosmowska and Jan Kosmowski Foundation Council.
CENTRAL MUSEUM OF TEXTILES IN ŁÓDŹ, POLAND
The Central Museum of Textiles is located in the White Factory – a unique place on the map of Łódź and a symbol of its textile past. The idea to create a museum of textiles in Łódź arose as early as in 1946. Six years later (1952), the Weaving Department was established at the Museum of Art in Łódź. The initiator, founder and first director of the Museum was Krystyna Kondratiuk. She was the one who clearly defined the manner and scope of the institution’s operations in the following years. In 60 years, the Museum of Textiles has come a long way to become a specialised institution presenting textiles from many perspectives: as a field of art, an industry, a vast area related to fashion, customs and everyday life. Thanks to the unique and priceless collections gathered over the years, visitors may learn the secrets of the textile production process (collection of textile tools and machines) and see the variety of textile design manufactured in the 19th and 20th centuries (collection of industrial textiles). These textiles come from many centuries and form a rich collection of antique tapestry. Particularly noteworthy is a collection of modern tapestry – one of the largest in the world. Very important are also: a collection of clothing allowing visitors to trace the changes in fashion canons in the 20th and 21st centuries, ethnographic collection documenting folk weaving in the 19th and 20th centuries, collection of documents and memorabilia related to the history of the textile industry, as well as extremely valuable collection of archival materials.