In Polish, the word “ziemia” may refer to the uppermost layer of the Earth’s crust or it could denote a geographical land; when capitalized, it functions as the proper name of the third planet in the Solar System. All these three meanings are reflected in the works featured at the exhibition, which were made between 1958 and today.
Thinking about earth in terms of an astrophysical phenomenon or as material (e.g. clay, sand, stone, natural dyes) dates back to the beginning of the practice which we call art. This interest was integral to human history; in the second half of the 20th century it acquired the character of social and political engagement, and thus became the foundation of a new approach to art and the natural environment.