Modern Artist as t.w.


The author analyses archival materials from IPN (Instytut Pamięci Narodowej – The Institute of National Remembrance) concerning a painter nicknamed ‘Tadeusz’. In 1973–1979, ‘Tadeusz’ was active as secret collaborator (t.w. – ”tajny współpracownik”) of SB (Służba Bezpieczeństwa – Interior Ministry Security Service). IPN documents contribute to the mapping of Polish art of the 1970s only to a limited extent. Nevertheless, they can form a basis for posing questions on artists’ collaborations with SB. The author claims that the acceptance of collaboration with SB was grounded in Tadeusz’s understanding of art based on the Enlightenment concept of modern art. He argues with a commonly accepted view that experimental art was persecuted in the Polish People’s Republic in the 1960s and the 1970s, and that the communist government showed any particular interest in fine art. In the annex, the author provides a full list of names found in Tadeusz’s files.

This article is only available as an abstract in the English version of our magazine.


Wojciech Włodarczyk