State of the Art State of the Art

At last, the Cosmopolitan Tower has unveiled the final piece in its swank-looking jigsaw: an installation by a world-renowned artist…

Art buffs have traditionally sneered at Warsaw’s public installations. Ever since Joanna Rajkowska first erected a 15-meter plastic palm tree on Rondo De Gaulle’a in 2002, the city has been treated to bursts of controversial art: from an outsized paper boat moored on the Wisła, to a giant inflatable teddy bear that moved fleetingly around town in 2013. And who can forget the rainbow that, until recently, stood defiantly on pl. Zbawiciela – certainly not the religious nutters and hooligan headcases that habitually attacked it.
Even the less divisive works have had their problems – viewed as little more than playful distractions, that sense of being wacky for the sake of it has often outweighed any artistic merit. But in a city of gaudy gimmicks, Eran Shakine’s You & Me stands out as a work that’s both sophisticated and mature. Unveiled in October, the eight-meter-tall installation depicts a man and woman standing precariously on opposite ends of a see-saw-style beam that swings slowly in the breeze – the idea, says the artist, is to show the fluctuating relationship people have with their partner. Wedged into the ‘Patio’ restaurant / recreation area of the Cosmopolitan Tower, it’s already achieved that rarest of triumphs by being hailed by both Joe Public and the critics. Assuming it hasn’t already blown down in a gale, judge for yourself by visiting ul. Twarda 2/4.

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