grafika: Kaja Gliwa

Curatorial Concept


Gdańsk 2080. Futurological Congress


The 12th edition of NARRACJE takes you on a journey to the year 2080, when a substantial part of Gdańsk will be submerged under the Baltic Sea. However, the one-metre sea level rise will not cause an environmental disaster predicted in bleak scenarios from the early 21st century.

Instead of an accelerationist vision of a concrete desert, the year 2080 will instead unfold in a stable ecosystem, in which human interference with nature brings about surprising outcomes. In our concept of the festival, we propose urban projects based on a speculation that synthesizes the work of an international team of artists. All activities are bound together by a vision of the future as a polyphony of concepts and voices standing in opposition to fatalistic predictions.

Wrzeszcz and other parts of Gdańsk will at one point serve as one of many examples of the dramatic consequences of humanity’s impact on our planet. While we are aware of the gravity of our situation, we do not believe in gloomy scenarios of the Anthropocene. We want to build an event whose narrative stretches far into the future, yet offers a visionary image of what’s to come, and, by way of a remedy, initiates a collaboration between residents, artists and activists.



Welcome to the future!

The year is 2080, and we are in the district of Lower Wrzeszcz, in a city that – in line with scientific predictions – has been flooded by the warm waters of the Baltic Sea. Yes, you heard it right. One Sunday evening the plans and brochures left on the desks of municipal officials were simply washed away by one of the countless lazy sea waves. The new coastline initially reached the outline of former Kościuszki and Kochanowskiego Streets. However, it soon transpired that reclaiming land from the sea made no sense. Instead of running out, water kept rising, and we, the residents, had to learn to live with it on new terms.

There seemed to be no space left for humans between the elements of earth and water. Scientific solutions from the early 21st century were of no use in the face of the incoming waves. Every attempt to counter the growing force of nature ended in a fiasco. Nothing seemed to work. No dam, barrier, regulation or wall was able to stop what was about to happen.

Fear not, though, this is not a disaster story – those only happen in the movies.

It finally dawned on us that instead of nervously watching the waves coming in, we ought to listen to their swooshing sound. There was something there that spoke to us. Something that wanted to talk. The warm waters of the Baltic Sea gave rise to new beings and marine creatures that quickly adapted to the changes. Originating from ancient archetypes: water serpents, sirens, aquarians, tritons and leviathans, they took on new, aquatic forms. They came to us with their terrestrial brethren – river sisters, stream brothers, street gutters, rapid brooks and tamed channels – demanding our attention. They came together and it soon became clear that the power now belonged to the marine folk, and we could only negotiate our share in it.

It was too late to return to the past, so we gave ourselves to the water, and she took us on the crest of her wave. We realized her healing properties and understood what medicine lay hidden in her depths – liquid sound and dripping wet rave. The scream of an angry carp became a signal for change, while flying waters, flooded housing development projects, a plastic odyssey and water tattoos turned into our everyday reality. In order to find our place on land, we too have turned into semi-water creatures, seekers of the last shell. Join us in this hydrological journey. Adopt a water perspective and take a glimpse at your future – and past.

Instytut Kultury Miejskiej
Długi Targ street 39/40

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Instytut Kultury Miejskiej Miasto Gdańsk GGM
Narracje #12

narracje #12