Anda Rottenberg is an art historian, art critic, and curator. She is currently preparing a large-scale exhibition titled “Poland–Germany. 1,000 Years,” slated to open at Berlin’s Marting-Gropius-Bau in the fall of 2011.
In 1986, she founded “Egit,” one of Poland’s first independent art foundations. She was an active member of the Polish branch of the International Association of Art Critics, and helped found the Institute for Art Promotion Foundation in 1998. She has served as curator for the Polish exhibitions at the Biennales in Venice, Istanbul, and São Paulo.
“A work of art is not created to insult people. It merely sheds light on an issue.“
Her views on art have always run against the grain of traditional and academic thought. Her tenure as the director of the Zachęta (1993–2000) landed Poland’s largest gallery on the front pages of newspapers. The opening of “Nazis” provoked extreme reactions (including the destruction of some pieces), while the display of a sculpture by Maurizio Cattelan, marking the 100th anniversary of the Zachęta Gallery, was met with sharp protests by right-wing politicians. She was the chair of the Program Committee of the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw when the body voted to disband in protest against the design the Board of Directors had chosen for the Museum’s future building.
Anda Rottenberg has published several books, including Sztuka w Polsce 1945–2005 (Art in Poland, 1945–2005, 2005), Przeciąg. Teksty o sztuce polskiej lat 80. (Draft. Essays on Polish Art in the 1980s, 2009), and the autobiographic novel Proszę bardzo (You’re Very Welcome, 2009).