Gunia Nowik Gallery

Lapis Mundi

Nicolas Grospierre
Lapis Mundi
Sep 29 – Nov 19, 2022

Museum of the Earth
Bohdan Pniewski's Villa
Na Skarpie 27

Exhibition partner: Polish Academy of Sciences, Museum of the Earth in Warsaw

Gunia Nowik Gallery invites for an exhibition by Nicolas Grospierre (b. 1975) at the Museum of the Earth. The project was born from the artist’s fascination not only with the architecture, but also with the interiors of stones, particularly agates. Fundamental to the exhibition is the idea that human civilization has a contradictory – or even perverse – relation with the natural world. Man-made material world needs the world of nature to come into existence, evolve, and flourish, but it destroys it in the process.

Artificial (i.e., man-made) beauty usually requires some degree of destruction to emerge. Another layer of the exhibition is the place itself – Bohdan Pniewski’s own villa. This pearl of modernism, erected on the remnants of an eighteenth century masonic lodge, is as raw and rough on the outside, and intricate and mysterious from the inside as the agates being the heart of the exposition. 

The works constituting Lapis Mundi are photographic objects woven into the villa’s interiors, as well as an arrangement of the interiors with the use of cabinets designed by Stanisław Zamecznik and a choice of agates from the museum’s collection, which the artist made in dialogue with curators from the Department of the Mineralogical and Petrographic Collections. Accompanying the exhibition is an essay by Grzegorz Piątek, the author of Bohdan Pniewski’s biography Indestructible.

Nicolas Grospierre, Agate Grotto (detail), 2021, 3D photographic prints, lightbox, steel, mirrors, brass, 181 x 58 x 71 cm