WARSZAWSKA PRAGA. A SCATTERED SELF-PORTRAIT (Warszawska Praga. Autoportret rozproszony)
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The intention of this article is to analyse accounts by artists working in the Praga district and concerning this part of Warsaw. The titular artists ascribe to Praga a number of positive values, including authenticity and a 'conducive ambiance'. The authoress portrays the prime protagonists of the Prague 'colonisation', their relations with the original residents of Praga, the dynamically developing 'Neighbours for neighbours' festival', and a local artistic venue - 'Sklad Butelek'. By referring to the theory expounded by Pierre Bourdieu, A. Chelstowska demonstrates that Praga is becoming part of the game played by artists. She perceives the changes taking place in the district within the context of a global history of the emergence of art quarters in large cities. Moreover, she analyses the myth of the art quarter and Bohemia (her understanding of the myth is the same as Roland Barthes' conception of contemporary mythicality). Finally, the study describes a number of reflections about the value of authenticity and the similarities between the part played in culture by the artist and the ethnologist.
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