On Monday evening, on the 20th of February, another meeting in the scope of Olivia Cooltura project took place. OBC was hosting a famous photojournalist from Gdańsk – Maciej Kosycarz. His extraordinarily vibrant personality, charisma and unusual aptitude for telling stories – captured on the photos of his father, Zbigniew Kosycarz, and his own photographs – made this meeting memorable for a large number of guests who gathered in Olivia Sky Club.
Maciej Kosycarz is a person who is known by the majority of people from Gdańsk. He can be boldly deemed as a “Man: cultural institution of Gdańsk”, but he prefers to introduce himself as a “Son of his own father”. It is because of huge respect for his father Zbigniew and his professional achievements, the salvaging of which became Maciej’s life mission. He is most of all a chronicler of changes occurring in our reality and tradition, who captures – with the help of his camera – constant and persistent things, as well as the ones that are evanescent. What is more, he organises exhibitions and Pomeranian press photography contest “Gdańsk Press Photo”. In the course of last dozen years, he has issued twelve albums from the series “Fot. Kosycarz”. On an everyday basis he is a photojournalist and the owner of Kosycarz Press Foto agency. Since last year, he has also been the co-owner of Galeria Sztuk Różnych (Gdańsk, Ogarna 101 Street).
The first part of the meeting was almost an hour-long conversation with Monika Bogdanowicz from Olivia Business Centre (the author of the project Olivia Cooltura). Maciej Kosycarz talked about how, from his early age, he had manifested entrepreneurial spirit and had been creatively developing his own, sometimes astonishing, business projects. In a hilarious way he shared with us his memories from youth and told a few words about his life of a photojournalist full of unique experiences. There was also some time for reflection on the development of media, new technologies and tools of communication which change the way we perceive photography. Kosycarz talked, among other things, about the influence of the above mentioned factors on our “photo-behaviour” and the way we capture pictures every day. Our guest appealed to the audience to capture, in any form, their relatives and the immediate environment: places of residence, way to work, walking routes etc. Basing on his own experience, he described some meetings from the past, for example with the future Miss World Aneta Kręglicka and a musician and satirist Krzysztof Skiba.
The elusiveness of moments can be captured forever thanks to taking pictures of the things that are important for us or which we would like to pass to our loved ones or future generations.
In the second part of the meeting Maciej Kosycarz presented his amazing collection of photos from his father archives– Zbigniew Kosycarz – as well as his own photos, which became a part of the history of Polish and global reportage. The screen in Olivia Sky presented a range of social, political and cultural situations, along with important historic events, such as the visit of Pope Jan Paweł II in Oliwa, the president of the USA George Bush or Lechia Gdańsk vs. Juventus Turyn football match.
In the final part we could see unique photos from pre- and post-war Oliwa. It has been a district of Gdańsk for 90 years and its intensive economic development reached its height especially in the last decade. In fact, though – taking into account the rich history of this place – Oliwa has always been a people-friendly place, open to the world and ready for new challenges. After all, in 60’s, in this area of Gdańsk there were built the highest blocks of flats and the biggest sport stadium.
The meeting ended, it could not have been otherwise, with the conversation with participants. There was also some time for photos and special dedications in Maciej Kosycarz’s albums.
We would like to thank all participants for their presence. Special thanks to Danuta Poczman (President of the Association “Moja Oliwa”), Tomasz Strug (StaraOliwa.pl) and Ewa Kowalska (IBedeker.pl).
We would also like to thank the Regional and Municipal Public Library in Gdańsk and Gdańsk Community Foundation for sponsorship, as well and Lobster Restaurant for delicious food and drinks.
Soon we will invite you to the next meet-the-author sessions.