Janek Simon is not only an artist, and sometimes a curator, but also an anarchist, programmer, craftsman, intellectual, social organizer, traveler, former junior champion in the card game bridge. He says he is interested in too many things: from globalization, political geography, artificial intelligence, digital materialism, algorithmic governance, financial speculation, and DIY strategies to postcolonial theories within Eastern Europe and the permanent, almost Gombrowicz-like dilemmas on what it means to be Polish. This publication presents Simon’s captivating work, both visually and intellectually, driven by constant curiosity, erudition, and the quest for what he calls “synthetic folklore”—a balance between the particular and the planetary with the possible use of new technologies. Synthetic Folklore is published on the occasion of Simon’s eponymous exhibition, which was curated by Joanna Warsza, at Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Warsaw.
Contributors: Inke Arns, Max Cegielski, Ekaterina Degot, Łukasz Gorczyca, Nav Haq, Virginija Januškevičiūtė, Nina Katchadourian, Joanna Kordjak, Pablo Larios, Małgorzata Ludwisiak, Lev Manovich, Daniel Muzyczuk, Sina Najafi, Lech Nowicki, Agnieszka Polska, Aleksandra Przegalińska, Mohammad Salemy, Sumesh Sharma, Ana Teixeira Pinto, Janek Simon, Jan Sowa, and Joanna Warsza.