Pozamiatać po włókniarkach
In her actions, Julita Wójcik (*1971, Poland) is often seen wearing seemingly traditional clothing. Her attire reminds us of a farmer’s wife or farm labourer, but her colourful head scarf and patterned apron also fulfil the cliché of a woman painter and thus contrast with the mundane, everyday character of her actions. Her performances are coloured by small actions, such as peeling potatoes in a gallery room or lecturing about abstract art notions to cows in the field, while her sculptures and wall pieces depicting communist era prefab buildings are also the product of a supposedly feminine activity: crocheting. Blurring the borders between what is agricultural/rural, artistic/idealistic and everyday/mundane, Wójcik offers an often humorous view of the human condition.
The video Pozamiatać po włókniarkach (To Sweep After Textile Workers) documents an action by Julita Wójcik in the empty Ludwig Geyer textile factory in Łódź, Poland, in 2003. The artist can be seen sweeping up dirt in the dark and derelict building. The title suggests the former use of the building and hints at the tendency to forget that female workers once had a strong presence in this city. Łódź used to be a nationally recognised centre of textile production before it became a post-industrial shopping centre. This video belongs to the Muzeum Sztuki w Łodzi (Museum of Art in Lodz), whose new buildings were erected on the former textile factory, meanwhile Geyer’s factory was demolished.
Courtesy Julita Wójcik