The Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art is one of Poland’s most prestigious art centres with a various program including exhibitions, performances, film screenings, and residencies. It is situated in a baroque castle surrounded by a park in the centre of Warsaw.
Situated in the centre of Warsaw, Ujazdowski Castle is a steep-roofed two-storey building in the late Baroque style. The castle is square with a central courtyard, and at each corner sits a hexagonal tower topped with a small bell tower. The castle has had an eventful history. The current building was reconstructed in the 1970s on the site of the former castle, which had been destroyed in 1954. It is a replica of the 17th/18th century castle which was built to the plans of the Italian architects of the Polish court and reworked in 1764 in the late Baroque style. The interiors, which had lost their Baroque and Rococo ornamentation, were returned to their former condition. Almost a third of the castle’s total area of 7,407m2 is now occupied by exhibition spaces. The architectural project of 1989 was carried out by the Ateliers de Restauration des Monuments under the supervision of Irena Oborska. In 1998, Ujazdowski Castle and the former arsenal next door, as well as the surrounding parks, were once again reorganised to meet contemporary scientific requirements and the new public missions of the Centre for Contemporary Art.
Poland’s first centre for contemporary art, it is a place in which various fields of art coexist with each other, interact, and transgress their own boundaries, in order to create new qualities and phenomena. It draws particular attention to the relationship between art and society, as well as interdisciplinarity, interactivity, site-specific productions, various forms of collaboration, networking, and co-production. It is a space for artistic exploration, research, workshops, and experiments more than a traditional exhibition space.
Today, nearly 1,500 events per year are held at the Ujazdowski Castle. Each year, it receives more than 100,000 visitors attracted by a rich program of exhibitions of both emerging and established artists, performances, arthouse cinema and educational workshops for every age group. Young artists and curators develop new projects here during their residencies. It is a vibrant place of creation and presentation of art.
ARTISTIC RESIDENCIES PROGRAMME
The residencies constitute an important branch of U–jazdowski’s programme. Since 2002, the institution has hosted in Warsaw over 250 art professionals, curators, artists, researchers, educators, organisers, individuals and collectives representing more than 50 countries from Europe, Asia, North America, South America and Africa. The Artistic Residencies department has continually developed and re-defined residency programme, sustaining an up-to-date critical reflection on the capacities of residencies as an artistic and instituting practice.