The life of the city takes place in the present and connects to the past with an infinite number of the threads of memory. It is their pieces that the identity and the future are woven of.
At the heart of our thinking of the Festival there has always been the vision of Łódź as the city whose material and spiritual heritage is multicultural, although the symbiosis of cultures had irretrievably collapsed. The purposes for which palaces and factories were built have disappeared. The modern world has entered the spaces of the past, separated from the former by an impassable border. The historic architecture of the buildings and the street plan have become a part of the modern city. We are open to new phenomena, and we are aware that we are still in the same place, with its history and the footsteps of those who created it. We live in a space that had not been created for us; we adapt to it and transform it into the future for those who will come later.
We thought so yesterday, planning the Festival for 2020. Today we were reminded that sometimes the future comes faster than we expect. It breaks into the life of the city. Beyond hope, it brings anxiety. It changes the habits and closes the doors, but opens new perspectives.
The first day of forced isolation was not over, and the Internet filled with culture. Concerts, performances, open archives; meetings, talks, masterclasses. Enthusiasm and joy of being together despite the distance. Determination despite the uncertainty. The sudden revelation that we cannot live to the full without culture.
The future is uncertain. In a very practical dimension. Will we be able to meet up? Sit next to each other? Shake hands? Or maybe we will keep the distance? We will definitely still need culture. This is why this summer the Festival will come to the participants even closer than usual, expecting nothing in return. As every year, the city will be the main actor and exhibition arena. We will use the languages in which it expresses itself, reach for the tools it uses, and enter the space of its everyday functioning.
Studio concerts and performances for small audiences, broadcast on-line; events in the urban space; local creators. Safe distance and soothing presence until we find ourselves in the unexpected future.
In September, we will hear a prelude to what will resound with full force next year and which cannot be done today, under the slogan we had chosen even before it took on a completely new meaning. We will return to the theaters and concert halls. We will meet again as we did before, though probably in a different way. After all, we are living in a space that particularly promotes the dynamic of modernity, memory of the past and openness to the future.