This year theme of the Gdynia Design Days festival refers to the history of Gdynia, which is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. An important, strategic and unique city.
In 1926, decisions were made to
build the port of Gdynia because Poland regained access to the sea. Despite
this, we are not a sea country. We have episodes with the sea: this is the
Swedish Deluge, and this is the battle of Oliwa. Although we have shipping
connections with the whole world, travel by ship or sea does not come to our
mind first. Although we have beautiful beaches and coastal reserves, we resort
to sunbathing south. Overseas neighbours do not seem close after all, the
overseas land is distant by nature.
We would like to regain connection with the sea, not geographical, but emotional. We want to regain the Baltic neighbourhood. The city and the surrounding area have a history that is sometimes forgotten or underestimated. Unique paths, traces of the city and its identity, crumbs of the past. Walking around Gdynia, we would also like to regain it, restore consciousness and memory.
The SEA is changeable and uncontrollable, it is an element of water, air and earth. By wisely entering alliances with this elements you can recover energy. We'll look at how others do it: countries where the sea element has made life difficult for centuries. We will consider how much energy we are wasting trying to obtain it. We want to regain balance in the discussion about what is ecological, responsible, wise and balanced. But also on a micro scale, by collecting and processing, we can recover raw materials or objects that can have a second and third life. Refreshed, renewed, with a changed function.
The sea as an element that feeds and kills. It also feeds us, terrestrial creatures living on its shores. The culture related to cuisine, processing, production is similar and different for us and our neighbours, although built of the same elements, forgotten, yet undiscovered. How can herring taste like? What does the wind taste like? What does the sea taste like? We want to recover this memory.
Design is a team game. It does not only speak about beautiful form and function, but also about technology, process and needs. Designing in Gdynia and for Gdynia requires alliances. As a festival, we want to cooperate with the academic, scientific and business community. We want to recover the natural, because of the needs, connections between them. We want design to regain its proper meaning.
Design is also tradition, materials, locality, craftsmanship. Many of them disappear, others are underestimated and unknown. The proximity of the sea has its own specialties and areas that a designer who intends to deal with marine themes must know. We want to find and name them. We want design to regain its sources.