Pustka po Żydach /2017
by Volodymyr Gavrysh & Andrii Dostliev
The so-called “emptiness after the Jews” (“pustka po Żydach” in Polish) still exists in the contemporary Polish cultural landscape but remains hidden from sight, especially in the public spaces. Places, where the Polish Jews died, were marked with memorials, however, places, where they lived, were erased from contemporary urban maps. They can only be found in textual sources now.
For this project, we actually did take one such source, namely the Warsaw phone book for the years 1939/40, and we've used the data from this phone book to create advertising posters for the businesses that existed in 1939 at one particular street in Warsaw. These posters were mounted on the walls, like real posters are, to attract attention to the ads – and to the emptiness that remains after the pre-war inhabitants of Warsaw.
The project was made during the Gaude Polonia scholarship programme of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.