Rafał Bujnowski’s exhibition “May 2066” is a story about the passing of time told in three chapters. The show starts with a video of a fit man doing his exercises in a white cube space: its 70-year-old protagonist, Włodek, has a body of a 40-year old and was first encountered by the artist at a gym in Kraków. The next room is dedicated to painting: abstract tondi and a monumental study of the sky composed of 9 separate canvases. But it’s not simply paintings: all those works were treated with a special ageing procedure. Immediately after creating them, they were put into a climate chamber (used in commerce on a daily basis to test the life-span of some products or materials) and thus gained 50 years in just a few nights. The conservator team has taken care of them afterwards, re-stretching them back, waxing and varnishing to avoid dimming the colors. The last part of the exhibition is a true surprise: there are two Mazda cars standing in the middle of the gallery. They are both a popular model from the 1986, but were in fact never used and are still in the exactly same state as when they were produced. Brand-old, so to speak.
Zachęta has also published a special (bilingual) catalog on the occasion of the exhibition, featuring an interview with the artist conducted by the show’s curator, Maria Brewińska. The whole print run of the publication has also undergone the same ageing procedure as the paintings did.