Edyta Urwanowicz — a painter and co-creator of the exhibition 'Only Pain is Mine' - Muzeum Pamięci Sybiru

22 November 2023

Edyta Urwanowicz — a painter and co-creator of the exhibition ‘Only Pain is Mine’

The painter Edyta Urwanowicz comes from Białystok, but she has been associated with the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk for years. Now he returns to his hometown with moving paintings co-creating an exhibition at the Sybir Memorial Museum.

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Edyta Urwanowicz was born in 1981 in Białystok. In the years 1996-2001 she attended the Artur Grottger State Secondary School of Fine Arts in Supraśl. She currently lives and works in Gdańsk. She is a graduate and has a PhD of the Faculty of Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts.

She defended her diploma in painting under the supervision of professor Henryk Cześnik, specializing in gravure printing in the studio of professor Alina Jackiewicz-Kaczmarek. During her studies, in 2007-2008, she attended Marmara University in Istanbul as part of an Erasmus scholarship.

Since 2014, she has been working at the Department of Visual Arts at the Faculty of Architecture of the Gdańsk University of Technology. In 2019, she got a doctor’s degree in arts in the discipline of fine arts, based on her doctoral thesis entitled: ‘The ornamentation of carpets in the context of contemporary art’ („Ornamentyka kobierców w kontekście sztuki współczesnej”).

She mainly deals with painting. In her works she is inspired by the form of Eastern carpets and double-warped fabrics, and tries to understand the values expressed by signs and ornaments. While painting motifs that carry some meaning, she looks for universal content, combining tradition with the present. An important role in her paintings is played by the ambiguity between the symbolic content contained in the structure of carpets and its blurring.

Her works have been exhibited in Poland, Lithuania, Germany and Switzerland. She took part in the 2nd Pomeranian Art Triennial at the State Art Gallery in Sopot and three times in the Gdańsk Art Biennial.

In 2022, together with Jan Buczkowski, Dominika Krechowicz and Krzysztof Wróblewski, she completed a monumental painting installation on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the Faculty of Electronics, Telecommunications and Informatics of the Gdańsk University of Technology.

In 2023, Edyta Urwanowicz accepted the invitation of the curators from the Sybir Memorial Museum in Białystok to give artistic form to the selected accounts of Sybiraks.

The exhibition ‘Only Pain is Mine’ is an exhibition prepared by women — about women. How their Siberia looked like and how they remembered it.

What did it mean to be a woman in Siberia? What difficulties did women face when they found themselves in a boundary situation? What experiences connect them with the victims of contemporary conflicts? Finally — is there only pain left for a woman who has experienced violence?

Grafika informująca o wernisażu wystawy "Tylko ból jest mój"

This is what the curators — Karolina Mosiej-Zambrano, PhD, Katarzyna Śliwowska and Magdalena Zięckowska-Tuchlińska — say about the exhibition:

We wanted to show those elements of the history, experiences of the women of Siberia that are often marginalized and have not been explored before… When the topic is war, we talk about men, who act, conquer, win. Women are on the margins of it…. We used not only direct accounts, but also memoirs, sometimes written in retrospect, not by the heroines of the exhibition, but also by their children or companions…

The opening of the exhibition will be accompanied by a scientific conference ‘Woman And War – Social, Cultural And Psychotraumatological Perspective’. It will take place on December 2 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

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