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120 years of history at Poland's first permanent architecture exhibition

22 of December '21

Poland's first permanent exhibition on the recent history of architecture has opened at the National Museum in Krakow. In the Szołayski House as part of the "Cross Sections. Gallery of Polish Architecture of the 20th and 21st Centuries" presents the most interesting examples of realizations and projects of the past 120 years. Together with the "Objects" exhibition, the galleries herald the planned Museum of Design and Architecture in the building of the former Cracovia Hotel.

beyond chronology


photo by Kacper Kepinski

The exhibition is devoted to the history and contemporary history of Polish architecture in the 20th and 21st centuries. However, they are not presented in chronological order, which shifts the weight of the discussion of architecture from the historical and artistic dimension to a dimension that touches the essence of architecture: how in different eras, with different technologies and different capital, attempts were made to face similar issues and problems - from the purely utilitarian to the symbolic.


photo by Kacper Kepinski

The cross-sectional nature of the exhibition, to which the exhibition's title refers, also refers to the functional diversity of the presented objects, allowing us to see the importance of architecture in the design of various areas of everyday life. The cross-section in the title is understood as a kind of cutting, allowing us to look beyond the formal layer and enabling us to look at the conditions from which each architectural realization grows.

relations and contexts


photo by Kacper Kępiński

The exhibition is divided into six themes. These are: COMPOSITION, NATURE, TECHNOLOGY, MANIFEST, TIME AND SPACE and COSTS. These slogans, as universal problem statements, make it possible to broaden the area of reflection on Polish architecture with the perspective of supra-regional and timeless questions.


photo by Kacper Kępiński

Through the form of architectural works, the technology used in their creation or the changes they undergo over the years, one can tell a lot about the era in which they are created or function. And also about ourselves, that is, those for whom architecture is created.

an exhibition for everyone

Manifest Manifest

photo by Kacper Kepinski

The gallery is created primarily with the non-professional viewer in mind. Coming from outside the architectural dictionary, the slogans-titles of the exhibition's chapters are meant to bring the subject matter of the exhibition closer to every viewer, emphasizing the importance of architecture in everyday life. By abandoning the chronological view of architectural history, the exhibition can be visited in different ways, which also allows building a diverse educational program. The viewer can visit only a selected part of the exhibition, or go through all of its chapters analyzing only examples from a given era - such as modernity or interwar modernism. The examples have been selected in such a way that each of the exhibition's themes has the most complete cross-section of both buildings from different eras and regions of Poland.

practical information

materiały rganizatora

Cross-sections. Gallery of Polish Architecture of the 20th and 21st Century

National Museum in Kraów
Kamienica Szołayskich im. F. Jasieńskiego
pl. Szczepański 9

opening hours:
Tuesday 11am-7pm
Wednesday-Sunday: 10-18

curatorial team:
Weronika Grzesiak
Małgorzata Jędrzejczyk
Kacper Kępiński

arrangement design:
Agnieszka Szultk

project coordinator:
Katarzyna Pawlowska

Wystawa wystawa

Kacper Kępiński

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