Patrycja Orzechowska, fot. Andrzej Karmasz

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1. Patrycja Orzechowska, Lament of Buried Water, 2019


site-specific sound installation

Patrycja Orzechowska: concept and words
Aleksandra Klimczak: soprano
Piotr Pawlak: recording and sound engineering

A small stream of water flows near the spot where Lament is presented – the Siedlce Brook, part of which runs along the main axis of the district. This small water course was referred to as Gdania in the Middle Ages, which is probably where the name “Gdańsk” came from. The channelled Siedlce Brook is currently but a narrow line in the local water and sewage system forming the underground part of the city.

The artist grants a voice to the invisible river, which in Lament sings about its fate and imprisonment. The looped sound comes from a well that symbolizes a trap, living water and mystery. As a literary and musical form, the lament expresses grief, helplessness in the face of adversities of fate, and despair. Yet this melancholy, nostalgic vocal miniature – sometimes taking on the form of a protest song – is first of all a piece without notation, based on free improvisation.

The work was recorded in the historical Old Sobieski Water Tank. Owing to the unique acoustic properties of the place, the soundwave of the human voice resounded in all its spectrum, moving from singing and chanting to whispers and shouts.


Patrycja Orzechowska is a visual artist and author of artist’s books who works with photography, collage, installation, collected objects, graphic design and film. She graduated in Graphic Arts from the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk and currently works on her PhD within the framework of Interdisciplinary Doctoral Studies offered by the University of the Arts Poznań. She holds multiple scholarships from the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, Marshal of the Pomeranian Province and Mayor of Gdańsk. Her works have been shown at several dozen solo and collective exhibitions.



The Siedlce Brook

The 7-kilometre brook flows through Siedlce in an underground canal, completely invisible. Yet during the Middle Ages, the stream was extremely important to inhabitants of Gdańsk: it provided water to numerous mills and was navigable. In the 16th century, it became the source of potable water for residents, which was transported via an oak pipeline. Once the Radunia Channel was dug, however, the stream’s role dwindled.

During heavy rain, the underground stream reminds citizens about its presence: the channel overflows, unable to hold so much water, and gushes out right in the middle of the city.

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1. Patrycja Orzechowska, Lament of Buried Water, 2019

manhole near 11 Kartuska St.

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Narracje 11

Narracje 11