Dissonant Heritage of Central Europe

Should the Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw be preserved or demolished? How to address the dissonant heritage of death camps and monuments to the Red Army? What is the secret to the phenomenon of some “large plate” tower blocks and Socialist Realist architecture? Are we willing to take responsibility for the entirety of material inheritance passed to us by older generations regardless of their national or ideological connotations? Authors featured in the 29. issue of “Herito” quarterly seek answers to these difficult questions.

In Poland and Central Europe, the last two decades witnessed the emergence of a large group of objects that are clearly discordant with the corpus of unquestionable monuments of national importance. These objects cannot be ignored or removed from our scope of attention. They provoke emotional reactions. It is for us to decide which elements of the inherited material culture we are willing to accept and treat responsibly. In this respect, the history of Central Europe leaves us with numerous difficulties.

In the 29. issue of “Herito”, Piotr Paziński investigates the problematic nature of death camps in Poland. Wojciech Wilczyk takes his camera and visits cemeteries of the soldiers of the Red Army, while Lola Paprocka visits the New Belgrade tower block project. Błażej Ciarkowski tells a story of holiday resorts built by the Nazis and the Communists. Jacek Purchla explains the nature of dissonant heritage. Michał Wiśniewski investigates the phenomenon of large plate tower block projects, while Aleksandra Sumorok proves that Socialist Realist architecture has many faces. Jakub Dąbrowski finds the sources of contemporary iconoclasm, and Ewa Chojecka analyses an unknown face of the udarnik monument in Zabrze. Of particular interest is Andrea Tompa's text on the history of Cluj – Romanian city with difficult history.

The issue features reviews of books by Kaja Puto, Mikołaj Banaszkiewicz, Katarzyna Kotyńska, Joanna Majewska, Łukasz Łoziński, Jakub Muchowski, Wojciech Wilczyk, Bartosz Sadulski, as well as announcements of visit-worthy exhibitions in Berlin, Budapest, Bratislava, Krakow, Olomouc, Prague, Warsaw, and Vienna.

    • 1
      Editorial

    • 4
      Worth a Look

  • Dissonant Heritage of Central Europe
    • 12
      The question of maturity

      Łukasz Galusek talk to Prof. Jacek Purchla

    • 26
      Holidays with totalitarianism

      Błażej Ciarkowski

    • 44
      Architects on the treadmill of history

      Janusz Sepioł

    • 60
      Designing socialist realism? In defence of architecture

      Aleksandra Sumorok

    • 90
      On our Block

      Michał Wiśniewski

    • 114
      Blokovi – photo-essay

      Lola Paprocka

    • 120
      Two formulas of post-iconoclasm

      Jakub Dąbrowski

    • 134
      Wincenty Pstrowski. Monument of a labour hero

      Ewa Chojecka

    • 140
      Visiting Red Army necropolies – photo-essay

      Wojciech Wilczyk

  • Reflections, Impressions, Opinions
    • 158
      Worth a Thought

      Mikołaj Banaszkiewicz, Iwona Boruszkowska, Katarzyna Kotyńska, Łukasz Łoziński, Jakub Muchowski, Kaja Puto, Bartosz Sadulski, Wojciech Wilczyk

  • By Myself
    • 178
      The dissonant heritage of extermination camps

      Piotr Paziński

    • 192
      Silent heritage of dramatic city

      Andrea Tompa