When Will I Be Little Again?

17 June 2016 – 18 September 2016
Opening: 17 June 2016, 6 p.m.


Artists: Paweł Althamer, Guy Ben-Ner, Karina Bisch, Christian Boltanski, Bracia, Anja Carr, Maciek Chorąży, Jan Fabre, Aneta Grzeszykowska, Wiktor Gutt, Władysław Hasior, Tadeusz Kantor, Tony Oursler, Claus Richter, Franciszka Themerson, Adam Walny, The Book Lovers 

Read more about the artists.



The cruel Queen, who has assumed absolute control of the servants and other inhabitants of the kingdom, has already had half of Tintagiles’ family murdered. The imprisoned hero calls for help but his potential rescuers are also put to death…

Maurice Maeterlinck – the Belgian playwright who wrote The Death of Tinatagiles for marionette theatre – believed that we were helpless in the face of fate. He thought that, due to their innate physical and psychological limitations, no actor was capable of personating the characters in the drama. For this reason, as the ideal alternative, Maeterlinck chose to use marionettes. As objects manipulated by the actor with strings, the puppet became a metaphor par excellence for the individual at the mercy of fate. In 1938, as a young student of the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow, Tadeusz Kantor used marionettes to produce a ‘pocket production’, Schlemmer-esque in spirit, based on Maeterlinck’s text. Half a century later, Kantor was to return to Maeterlinck’s drama and continue the production in the first part of the cricotage The Machine of Love and Death.

The key themes of the exhibition When Will I Be Little Again? are the coming-of-age story and the moment when the artistic personality is borne. In the cinema, the coming-of-age film represents a distinct genre, and in literature the theme is taken up in the Bildungsroman and the Künstlerroman. The focal point in all of these is the psychological and moral progress of the individual from childhood to maturity and into the world of grownups. The complex transformation that the protagonist undergoes is crucial for the plot development. The exhibition captures the moments of transformation and spiritual rapture that accompany artists throughout puberty. The project concentrates on the artist’s early creativity and fascination with the iconography of childhood and with marionette theatre, which can be interpreted as a metaphor for the world of human beings. During the exhibition, different rites of passage will be enacted, using images and objects.

At the exhibition When Will I Be Little Again? we will find novels written by visual artists that belong to the coming-of-age genre, which come from  the M UHK’a collection in Antwerp, created as part of the project The Book Lovers. The exhibition will also include early works of Władysław Hasior, Tony Oursler and Christian Boltanski, as well as works that were born out of artists becoming parents and working with children, such as objects by Aneta Grzeszykowska and Paweł Althamer and films by Wiktor Gutt. We will also see works by Maciek Chorąży, Anja Carr and Claus Richter that take up the iconography of childhood. There will be an opportunity to see costumes and objects from the performance Songs of Love and Death, by the duo Bracia, directed by Cezary Tomaszewski. And Karina Bisch, who in her art draws on the tradition of Schlemmer’s theatre, will make a mural especially for the exhibition. Some of the works presented will be accompanied by a performance.

The title When Will I Be Little Again? comes from a book by Janusz Korczak, in which the author evokes the trials of childhood, reminding us that as children, we long to grow up.





Curator: Joanna Zielińska
Graphic design: Noviki
Arrangement design: Matosek  Niezgoda











Special thanks to Capella Cracoviensis


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