About the exhibition

The exhibition of Ryszard Winiarski’s works presents the oeuvre of one of the most interesting personalities of the Polish art of the second half of the 20th century. An artist, engineer, painter, stage designer, teacher, precursor of conceptual art, and the leading representative of indeterminism. In his diploma thesis of 1966, titled “Event-Information-Image”, he defined a mature and innovative concept of a piece of art based on an attempt at transferring the issues of mathematics, statistics, information technology, and game theory to canvas. The masterly intellectual game recorded in the  square “Areas” built of black and white modules permitted the artist to vary effects and techniques. He created both relief, kinetic, spatial objects and interactive game boards, surprising  viewers with an invitation to participate.

The exhibition demonstrates an impressive spectrum of visual effects of the artist’s explorations. Beginning with “Attempts at a visual presentation of statistical distributions” and  “Penetration of illusory and real spaces”, to “Areas” constructed with mirrors with the use of the third dimension, to irregular “Sets” and randomised “Events”. The exhibition is complemented with “Game Parlour” composed of a set of board games of 1976, where we encourage, after Winiarski, active participation in the process of creating visual objects similar to those of the artist’s. The painting fields which earlier had been artistically arranged were replaced by plain boards, places for games.

The idea chosen and applied by Ryszard Winiarski has developed into a programme with a prophetic value that could not be foreseen at the time of his activity. His bold vision of incorporating the real information in the painting, binary aesthetics, and use of participation perfectly fit Ryszard Winiarski’s oeuvre of the 1970s into such widespread contemporary phenomena as development of visual communication, dominance of digital narrations, universality of participation, popularity of QR codes.

Exhibited works by Ryszard Winiarski come from: Anna and Jerzy Starak Collection, the collection of the artist’s family, private collections and the collection of the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź.

The Idea

When commencing a construction of a painting or an object (I usually call them “areas”, as I am not sure whether the name “painting” corresponds to their nature), I determine the rules of conduct, rules of the game first, and then I invite chance to participate in the project. The source of chance may be a coin, a dice, a roulette, a board with random numbers, or even a properly programmed computer. A  specific contest subject to the laws of the logic of chance takes place on the surface or in the space. Together with the growing number of programmes the rules of the game become increasingly more complicated, the random variable faces more and more new tasks, and thus the areas pass from the simplest to more and more complex ones.

Starak Family Foundation
Spectra Art Space

Anna and Jerzy Starak

President of the Foundation Board
Elżbieta Dzikowska

Ania Muszyńska


Exhibition info
Zuzanna Atanasow

Location & opening hours

Ryszard Winiarski | Event-Information-Image exhibition is open to public from 13th May to 26th November 2017, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Closed on Mondays.
Free admission.

Location: Palazzo Bollani
Castello 3647, Venice
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Game no 1. Chance game for two. | 1976
Played by Magda & Kama in June 2016

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