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Hits and kits, or a summary of the year 2021 in architecture (part II)

05 of January '22

The end of December - because that's when we finished preparing the January issue - is the best time for all kinds of summaries. And like every year, we ask practitioners and architecture critics to write what they consider a success and what they consider a failure in a given year. We do this in the convention of Kits and Hits. We give our Authors and Authors total freedom of expression and exceptionally we do not moderate this discussion. We are simply very curious about it.

Tomasz Malkowski on hits and putts in 2021
fromA&B issue 01|2022

Architecture in the shadows

What was the passing year in Polish architecture? The situation related to the pandemic, and in the last six months the one related to the humanitarian catastrophe on the Polish-Belarusian border, heated by more and more new political and social upheavals, in which the governments of our unlovely rulers abound, put - in my opinion - architecture in the background. It's hard to get excited about a building or an exhibition when people, including completely defenseless children, are freezing at the gates of our country. Even the bright moments of this year, such as the "Nike" Literary Award nomination for Grzegorz Piątek for his excellent book "The Best City in the World. Warsaw in Reconstruction 1944-1949," were overshadowed by current political events. Grzesiek himself, at the Nike gala, commented on our situation without euphemisms, but aptly, as befits a racial literary man - we are mired in "fascist shit."

I am glad that a representative of our environment at such a time was able to boldly call a spade a spade. An environment that on a daily basis is silent and increasingly marginal. An environment that writes more open letters that no one reads anymore. Friday restored my faith in architects and architecture critics. And on top of that, he has written an engaging book about the already mythical times when architects had some meaning in this country, when they not only built, but also created reality, spun visions and dreams of a better tomorrow.

In the meantime, let's get ready to lay the cornerstone for the Saski Palace. I hope it will be the last monument to this power. Someday there may be voices to demolish the Saski. But let it stand forever on Pilsudski Square as a stone and eloquent warning. These grandfathers simply deserve these marble colonnades. Their place is in the dustbin of history.


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