About Us

The Studio functions in an open formula and can be a leading studio for students of the Faculty of Sculpture as well as a „free choice studio” for students of other faculties of the University of the Arts in Poznan.

How we work

Programmatic lack of a program

The First Studio of Sculpture and Spatial Activities does not offer a program to the students, but it creates conditions for attempting to ask questions resulting from his/her intuition, insights and personality. The provided assistance serves to develop a lifetime of self-reliance in autodidactic inquiry. The passage of time, work and reflective experience, as well as participation in meetings to present students’ work and discussions among the people who make up the Studio, create a platform which reveals individual problems and their different understandings. Individual curricula understood in this way do not have to be linear. Students have a great chance to learn responsibility, which is important for a given problematic and to find proper means of articulation for it, as well as to fully understand the referenced contexts. The first year of studies has a propaedeutic program introducing the issue of dependencies between a detailed problem, articulation matter, space and relations of existing and constructed situations. The program is complemented by annual workshops/ plein-air workshops organized together with invited artists and students from other studios and universities in Poland and abroad.

By tradition, the studio follows no programme. However, for each student attending the studio to be ready for the challenge of attempting independence, they are taught – through groupwork – to make use of their own dispositions, motivations and external contexts, along with the means of articulation experienced in relation to them. The aim of this preliminary preparation is to introduce students to self-education and self-reflection. The next stage for students to pass through is individual presentation of finished works in front of all people present in the studio (without prior corrections), accompanied by a discussion. This method is meant to foster independent development of separate personalities. This is the basis of humanist creation in the complex conditions of surrounding standardisation.

prof. Jan Berdyszak

Who we are

The Tutors' role in the didactic process

During the classes, we confront each other with prepared situations, forcing the kind of final reactions that can take the character of creative actions or values. This gives us an opportunity to quickly recognize the current state of our own knowledge, sensitivity and interests, which are concentrated in the face of such and not other choices. An absolutely necessary condition is a joint, group reflection on this reaction, which should be understood not as artistic work but as a kind of presentation of oneself, both to oneself and to others.

Therefore, the role of the Studio Leader is to create circumstances which make it possible for the student to get to know his individual field of interests and, ultimately, to get to know himself and his reactions. This can only happen through the presence of others who participate in the joint feedback. This is important because at the beginning the presence of others activates us so that in the future we treat ourselves as partners.


How it all started

A few words about prof. Jan Berdyszak

Jan Berdyszak (1934-2014) was a Polish artist, art theorist and educator, known for his rich artistic career and influential teaching work at several academic institutions in Poland. He was a graduate of sculpture studies at the Academy of Fine Arts (ASP) in Poznań (1952–1958), where he worked from 1965. In the years 1984–1987 he was the Vice-Rector of this university. Honored with The Jan cybis Prize (1978), the Knight’s Cross (1988) and the Officer’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta (2001), the Gold Medal For Merit to Culture „Gloria Artis” (2008) and the Doctorate Honoris Causa of the Academy of Fine Arts in Bratislava (1999).

Berdyszak’s didactic activity focused on providing students with knowledge in the field of art theory and practical artistic skills. His teaching method was based on an individual approach to each student, as well as an emphasis on critical thinking and the ability to solve problems independently.

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