Elżbieta Jabłońska – Vanishing

The project was determined by the specificity of the selected site – a provisionally supported balcony, functioning for a number of decades next to the façade of Rybna Gate, and the fact that Rybna street was along the border of the Lublin ghetto. Old Town is perceived by the artist, and presumably by residents as well, as a thick texture full of meanings, traces of various artistic activities, objects and historic relics. For this reason, the artist decided to conceal her project and to pick out some area in the surrounding space.

Creation of the work was influenced by memories of Teresa Buk-Szmigielska recorded by Teatr NN. Mrs Szmigielska, resident of Rybna street, witnessed historic events during World War II. Among keepsakes that survived the war, she found a spoon her mother was offered to by one of the neighbouring Jewish families. This seemingly worthless spoon left after people who “vanished”, became the point of reference for works performed on the balcony. The decorative pattern from the spoon was transferred onto the bottom of the balcony as a simplified drawing made on wooden slabs. At the end of March 2017, when the artist started to search for Mrs Buk-Szmigielska, the latter passed away – she vanished. The work also vanishes, merging in an astonishing manner with the structure of the balcony, encountered by the passers-by who will be slowly discovering its existence.