The ‘Open Activity Academy’, or: On Akademia Ruchu Centres | Dworakowska | Polish Theatre Journal

ISSN 2451-2966


Zofia Dworakowska

The ‘Open Activity Academy’, or: On Akademia Ruchu Centres


Research on Akademia Ruchu’s (an artistic collective operating in Poland since 1973) creative output focuses usually on the group’s theatrical activity and its initiatives in public space. The presented text proposes to draw attention to another current in this experimental artistic collective’s activities, namely the creation of centres mentioned in the title. From the analysis of programs of the centres run by Akademia Ruchu, as well as from the texts written by the group’s leader – Wojciech Krukowski – an original and pioneering concept of a cultural institution emerges. The institution is not limited to presenting Akademia Ruchu’s theatrical productions, or to a wider theatrical program, but it rather has an intermedia nature and reflects on the various possibilities of participation, both in the artistic, as well as social dimension. It turns out, therefore, that within the institution’s concept the most important themes of artistic projects can be found, which not only shows ideological coherence, but also makes one interpret Akademia Ruchu’s activity in the centres as an equally valid and a highly important area of the collective’s creative work.


Academia Ruchu; participatory institution; socially engaged art; site specific institution; institution as a project; intermediality

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Zofia Dworakowska

(1987), holds a PhD in cultural studies; anthropologist of culture, theatre-studies scholar, researcher of different forms of cultural participation, socially engaged art and issues connected with qualitative methodology. She is head of the culture-animation specialization and co-leader of the theatre-pedagogy postgraduate studies programme. As an expert, she has worked for the Culture Office of the Warsaw City Council, the Polish Ministry of Culture and at the Theatre Institute in Warsaw, Komuna// Warszawa, the Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, and others. She has curated festivals including Theatre in Public Space (Warsaw, 2010) and the ZWYKI – Folk Theatre Festival (Warsaw, 2011, 2013), and the exhibition ‘Miasto w działaniu’ (‘Art Incubator’, Łódź, 2014), the program ‘Mów za siebie’ (at the Theatre Institute in Warsaw, 2014–2017), the artist residency of the Platformer collective (Residency, 2015). She has edited books including CZ/P:.Theatre after Reconstruction (2008), Wolność w systemie zniewolenia. Rozmowy o polskiej kontrkulturze [Freedom in Times of Enslavement: Conversations about Polish Counterculture] with Aldona Jawłowska (2008), Creative Communities: Field Notes with Joanna Kubicka (2012), and A Thousand and One Nights: The Connections of Odin Teatret with Poland (2014). She has published in the journals Didaskalia. Gazeta teatralna, Kultura współczesna, Scena Teatr.