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Museum of London Shows a Collection of Portraits of Londoners with Polish Roots
London Creatives: Polish Roots by photographer Grzegorz Lepiarz
London Creatives: Polish Roots, a collection of portraits of Londoners with Polish roots by photographer Grzegorz Lepiarz, goes on show at the Museum of London from October 1 to November 1, 2009. The display, which is presented by the Polish Cultural Institute, honors Londoners of Polish origins who, as leaders in their field, have actively played a part in Londonís vibrant cultural scene and asks how their Polish roots have shaped and affected their careers in London.

The display includes portraits from a wide spectrum of backgrounds and artistic disciplines including Adam Ficek (musician and drummer with Babyshambles), Andrew Czezowski (co-founder of The Fridge and The Roxy), and Iwona Blazwick, (Director at London's Whitechapel Gallery) as well as Polish film directors, architects, artists, journalists, costume designers and poets.

Accompanying the black & white portraits are video interviews with several of the subjects. The interviews give a rare insight into how it feels to be a Londoner with Polish heritage. The interviewees describe how they found their own identity in London and how the vibrancy and confidence of London has affected their characters and shaped their creative talents.

Grzegorz Lepiarz said: ďIn the creative fields of music and visual arts, the branding of the person, their 'image', becomes an integral part of their life. I wanted to capture the essence of a person's individuality, within the soulful moments of their silence. I believe that these moments, the ones behind the glamour, are the portraits worth registering.'

Professor Jack Lohman, Director of the Museum of London, said: ďIím a Polish Londoner. I have strong Polish roots but I was born here. I adore London, take holidays here and canít see myself living anywhere else. But deep inside Iím very, very Polish with a strong affection for Poland. Museum of London is a museum for and about all Londoners of all nationalities: there is no more fitting host for this display.Ē

Roland Chojnacki, Director of the Polish Cultural Institute, said: ďHaving lived and studied in London for many years, I have seen many changes in the Polish cultural scene. It is now such a vibrant collective of creative talents and Iím delighted to see it illustrated in the display at the Museum of London.Ē

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