Unexpected Encounter

16 Mar 2018 – 20 May 2018

Event times

Tuesday – Sunday, 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Cost of entry

Free admission

Zachęta Project Room

mazowieckie, Poland


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Korean artists Won Seoung Won and Polish artist Anna Panek who are from different cultures establish a dialogue about 'Unexpected Encounter'.


Work on the ‘Unexpected Encounter’ exhibition started with a meeting. Kko-Kka Lee, a curator from Seoul, who was in Warsaw on a research, gave Magda Kardasz, curator of the Zachęta Project Room, a presentation of her favourite artists from Korea. In turn, Magda presented them to Anna Panek, a Warsaw artist with whom she had been planning an exhibition for some time. The artist liked the idea of establishing a dialogue with another artist, and she chose Won Seoung Won, who also agreed to take up the challenge. This was the story behind the ‘unexpected encounter’ of two fully fledged artists from distant cultures.

The artists decided that each of them would show one of their latest works, and in the central section of the gallery, they would create a composition together. In the case of Won Seoung Won, they are pencil crayon drawings with a surrealist climate, in which she combines fragments of human figures, objects and elements of nature. The fairy-tale atmosphere is mixed with apocalyptic imagery. They can be read as representations of events and experiences reflected in the subconscious. On the other hand, the single-coloured forms with geometric-organic shapes proposed by Anna Panek seem to be an abstract reflection of natural forms. They vary in value and some of them extrude into the third dimension and can be touched. Panek’s approach is characterised by the placement of painting in close proximity of the forces of nature. The artist admits that lately, she has been more interested in attempting to paint abstract concepts than in taking her paintings into the realm of architecture, which characterised her earlier projects.

Treating nature as an inexhaustible source of forms and inspirations links the work of both artists, although the motivations and goals of art are different for each of them. At the Zachęta Project Room, the walls and floor of the gallery are the foundation of the joint artwork. The paintings emerge from the frames, engage in a conversation and sometimes conflict. The actions on the walls set the direction of the tension in the dialogue between Won Seoung Won and Anna Panek’s works.

The exhibition title — 'Unexpected Encounter' — was adapted from a poem by Wisława Szymborska, a Polish poet and Nobel Prize laureate. The unique poetic expressions that can be seen in the poem seem quite similar to those of the two artists — the exhibition will show us a new perspective on the unexpected encounter.

Anna Panek (born 1977) — A painter and architect, graduated from the Faculty of Architecture at the Wrocław University of Technology and the Faculty of Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. The scope of her work includes paintings, murals and installations in the context of architecture. She lives and works in Warsaw.

Won Seoung Won (born 1972) — graduated from the Chung-Ang University College of Art with a degree in sculpture and from the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf and the Academy of Media Arts Cologne in Germany. Her works has involved a unique and meticulous from of photographic collage mixing reality and fantasy. She lives and works in Seoul

curators: Magda Kardasz, Kko-Kka Lee

cooperation on the part of Zachęta Project Room: Julia Harasimowicz

exhibition co-organiser: Embassy of the Republic of Korea Cultural Centre

exhibition supported by: Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism of the Republic of Korea, Korea Arts Management Service, KSPO Korea Sports Promotion Foundation

Zachęta Project Room sponsor: Benq
opening sponsorts: Freixenet, Chocolissimo
media patronage: Stolica, artinfo.pl


Magda Kardasz


Exhibiting artists

Won Seoung Won

Anna Panek


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