She finds that within the arts, UK and Poland are totally different, and we discuss how it is to work within two such different cultures. She reminds me that Poland is a very young democracy (1989), which has forced it to reinvent large parts of its culture system. “It’s super dynamic and active,” she begins; “the new museums are flourishing, and the art scene is very vibrant. The concept of the artist is still very romantic, whereas I tend to drift towards the idea of ‘artist as researcher’ which I find to be a very London thing. Besides that, London has this crazy drive for newness and innovation what differentiates it from any other place in the world, maybe apart from Silicon Valley. It provides culture sensation seekers with endless shows and debates and shortens a distance between people. I wish this could be possible in Poland too.”
Although currently based in Berlin, Beata still continues to work as an active member of the Polish cultural scene. She taught fashion theory at the university for two years, and recently finished ‘FOLD’, an art show that examined fashion’s collaborative models models in the context of an exhibition. In today’s oversaturated art market, it becomes easier and easier to consider art works as more commodities for sale, as with fashion – art and fashion are produced, distributed and sold, and she set to out to explore the inherent differences in such a process. Beata finds fashion to be more collective by nature, which suits her own preferred way of working. “I am not big on this grand narrative of an artist sitting in the studio and making some XXL paintings,” she says “– when you work with fashion, you always work with other people, and I really enjoy that.” For the show, she invited people who represented typical fashion entities such as magazines, models, designers, photographers – she included work by Melbourne artist and writer Holly Childs, and collaborated with experimental designer and CSM-colleague Marlene Huissoud on a ‘lava perfume’ project. ”I collected lava samples from Lanzarote and Iceland and tried to work with the concept of perfume, their speculative potential and magical properties as perfumes are what we believe they are. The whole show was filled with organic matter and temporal elements, as I think time is very important when talking about fashion, with its production cycle, fashion shows and constant changing through history.” Objects in the exhibition, from a ring made of chewed up gum to lava rocks immersed in hair gel, question the distinctions we make between ‘art’ and ‘fashion’ – even the status of their objecthood. “Of course these objects are considered art works as they are being framed in an exhibition format, but I would like to leave it open – whether it’s fashion or art. I think its somewhere in between, and I quite like this,” she adds.