MALL WALL ART – competition resolved!

An idea originated at the end of 2011 to use one of the largest commercial surfaces located in the city centre, the wall of Galeria Krakowska facing the main railway station, for non-commercial purposes. The managing director of Galeria, Ryszard Wysokiński, suggested to deliver this surface into the hands of street artists. The idea was discussed and debated by the representatives of the city authorities, the professors of the artistic schools in Krakow, the managers of cultural institutions, reporters and artists. Their opinions gave shape to the international competition "MALL WALL ART" whose progenitor and chief promoter was, from the very beginning, the managing director of Galeria Krakowska. The competition for a mural painting was announced in December 2012. The prize was 20,000 zlotys and the possibility to realize the awarded project. Over 500 entries were received from all over the world.

For the sake of the highest level of the MALL WALL ART competition a jury was composed of members of the cultural and artistic elite of modern Krakow.


Galeria Krakowska


    During the first phase of the competition the jury selected 55 best works from among the 500 entries. Projects of an international character were placed in the strict forefront, both extremely universal in their meaning as well as those that very literally referred to local symbols. Each project was discussed in detail. Three works were selected in the second phase of the competition selection. The work of the Polish artist, Justyna Posiecz-Polkowska, associated with the Gdańsk School of Mural, was finally chosen as the winner of the competition. During the debate, the competition jury emphasized the profound artistic connotations and high level of the project. The ambiguity of the mural interpretation was very much favoured by members of the jury. All the members of the jury unanimously acknowledged that the motif and mood of the painting harmonizes with the view if the historic city centre. Professor Zbigniew Bajek discovered both gravity and humour in Justyna's project: "The design combines the image of severity and a playful form, high and folk art; it contains soundness and unconstraint. The painting can be viewed from various angles and from different perspectives". The entered works featured a great diversity. Although most of them were maintained in an illustrative and narrative stream the jury was able to select from both figurative and abstract projects. Many of the works referred to folklore, typical Krakow art or obvious symbols of an urban conglomeration. The entered works included images of a dragon, Lajkonik the Hobby Horse and pigeons... Whereas the objective of the jury was to select a design which after its implementation would not become a familiar and tiring view after some time becoming another unnoticed blotch within the public space. Thus, in consequence of such an approach, the jury selected the three most interesting suggestions for the mural. It so happened, that the works of Justyna Posiecz-Polkowska, Anna Taut and Diana and Bruno Grabowski-Althamer were most appreciated by the jury at this phase of the competition. The jury was fascinated by the sculptural and spatial character of the work of Justyna Posiecz-Polkowska, the sober colours reflecting the character of the place, the profound artistic connotation of a Cracovian provenance and the abstractiveness of the proposed design. All the members of the jury emphasized the high level of the design, its uniqueness and innovative approach to the subject of a mural and the artist's experience in implementing large-format murals.


    Patronat honorowy:
    Prezydent Miasta Krakowa Jacek Majchrowski

    On behalf of Galeria Krakowska I have the pleasure to invite the artists of visual arts, and especially street artists, to participate in the competition for the mural design. This competition is open for all and as thus this invitation is forwarded to both artists with achievements as well as debutantes. An international formula shall allow for a high degree of differentiation in form of the submitted designs and shall also raise the bar of competition. The competition organizers are neither specifically defining the subject matter of the design nor the artistic convention of the work assuming that this is a decision to be made by individual artists.

    Art in public space, especially large format painting on walls is a huge challenge for any artist. It is quite possible that a spectacular performance of such a work will draw the attention of media and will be recognized by critics and set the orientation for further creative development. However, there are certain factors that have to be considered if a valuable mural is to be created, such as e.g. the historic, social and urban context. The historic texture of the city or district in which the mural will be painted as well as a thorough investigation of its social dynamics shall most certainly have an impact on the final result. Also, the shape of the building itself carries a certain significance as well as its immediate neighbourhood, special relationship with other buildings surrounding it and the commercial aspects of the façade.


    The building of Galeria Krakowska is located in the direct centre of the city of Krakow where historic buildings of the Old Town coincide with modern architecture of office buildings as well as commercial and service facilities. The railway infrastructure is a significant element of the landscape; the main building of the railway station, platforms, rails, contact wires and transmission poles of the traction system and the never ending traffic. Every day, hundreds of trains and thousands of passengers will pass the façade on which the awarded mural will be painted. At the same time the wall itself riddled with numerous glazing, windows and ventilation pipes is not such a simple canvas to paint on. Thus those who shall participate in the competition will have to face a responsible and difficult task.
    Good Luck!


    Artur Wabik
    Art Director of MALL WALL ART

    Ryszard Wysokiński
    Director of Galeria Krakowska

    About the winning project: "Deciding about the fate of commercial space for artistic actions, I wanted to open Galeria Krakowska to new trends in art, to change the industrial facade of the shopping mall into an artistic showpiece of the city. From the very beginning, I claimed that the only limits for artists should be the limits of their imagination and the size of mural surface. The awarded project was the one combining the main points of focus of the competition: modern, toned-down form, immersed in the best traditions of the Polish art."

    Maria Anna Potocka
    Managing Director of the Museum of the Contemporary Art in Krakow (MOCAK)

    About the winning project: "The selected project was one allowing various dreams to come true. It is abstract, but still brings to mind the idea of modernism, progress and fight. It is a painted composition, but looks like a sculpture. It is prepared with precision and perfectly executed. Moreover, it does not clash with the architecture, smoothly transitioning its complications."

    Jacek Stokłosa
    Chief Art Consultant of the City of Krakow

    About the winning project: "The work of the Jury was well prepared from an organizational point of view and run smoothly, despite the huge number of entries. The discussions were substantive and marked with sensitivity to all aspects of the future realization. The decision of Galeria Krakowska to organise the competition is to be applauded. The way it was organised as well as the fact of organising the visual solutions for the east facade, being remarkable given the size of the building, was approved by the community and, judging from the number of submitted works, with great interest on the part of artists. Solution was total, but still attractive in its every part, which is essential due to the difficulty of viewing the walls of the shopping mall as a whole. It is an artistic reference to great traditions of Polish and Krakow art. The spaciousness of the drawing supports well the architecture of the hitherto forgotten side façade of the Galeria Krakowska building. The theme and tone of the image harmonize with the view of the historic centre of the city."

    Magdalena Sroka
    Deputy Mayor of the City of Krakow for Culture and City Promotion

    About the winning project: "I am pleased I could take part in the deliberations of the Jury. Its members were competent persons, loving Krakow and interested in art and street art. The forefront of the discussions included thematically very diversified works. The chosen project of Justyna Posiecz-Polkowska arouses curiosity, moves the imagination and gives a lot of room for interpretation. It will certainly be surprising for viewers. It contains references to Xawery Dunikowski and his sculpting style. I am convinced that the selected work will entirely change the façade of the shopping mall."

    Izabela Helbin
    Director of Krakow Festival Bureau

    About the winning project: "The awarded composition was monumental, referring to the spirit of the Interwar Period, constructivist in form and very rhythmical. We selected it because of painting qualities and because the interesting metallic-grey colour scheme perfectly fits into the surroundings of the railway station. The artist, whose project has won, also created large format projects and cooperated with the Gdansk School of Mural. Her experience also convinces that the realization of such an enormous project can be successful."

    Zbigniew Bajek
    Professor of Faculty of Painting of the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow

    About the winning project: "The project awarded in the Mall Wall Art International Competition by Justyna Posiecz-Polkowska meets all the requirements which competition organizers have set. At the same time, it stands out of the enormous number of submitted concepts with its form, colour scheme, the "way of communicating" with the building on which it will be placed, the immediate surroundings and... Krakow: its past and the present.
    In my opinion, the artist alludes to Krakow Workshops, an association established at the beginning of the 20th century bringing together outstanding artists, designers and craftsmen who called for improving the artistic quality of objects of everyday use. Not getting into the details, I will just mention that the idea of Krakow Workshops proved to be right, which was confirmed by a worldwide success at the International Exhibition of Decorative Arts and Modern Industry in Paris in 1925. The awarded project alludes to woodcarving – wooden reliefs, which substantially changes the stiff, geometric body of Galeria Krakowska with its sculpting-flickering structure, not interfering with it at the same time. It combines seriousness and play with form, high art with "folk" art; it is simultaneously sturdy and "breathy". It can be viewed from different angles and from different distances.
    The author's experience in realizing large format projects on building walls allows us to trust that also this time, she will transfer her intention upon the right object, maintaining all the qualities of her idea."

    Artur Wabik
    Artistic Director of the Mall Wall Art Competition, mural artist

    About the winning project: "The project selected in the competition is a very interesting and balanced composition that alludes to sculpting works of the 1920s. Calm within its chromatic sphere, mechanically divided into small square modules, it is at the same time very dynamic and full of internal tensions. Cut arcs, hollows and bulges push each other to create the impression of continuous motion. The vibrating structure brings to mind a precise mechanism whose operations will take the viewer some time to discover. It is a unique proposition in comparison to other murals currently created in Poland. Due to the numerous details, it is undoubtedly difficult to transfer onto a wall. Nonetheless, I am hopeful, the finished mural will be most often viewed from a short distance and every passer-by should have the chance to fully experience it."

    Dawid Hajok
    Journalist of Gazeta Wyborcza

    About the winning project: "Allegedly, Xawery Dunikowski tugged a cart in Krakow with a wooden model of the sculpture of Mayor Józef Dietl, standing today in front of the city hall, in order to find a suitable place for it. Certainly, it could have been placed with equal success in many other places, just as the alluding to his works mural created by Justyna Posiecz-Polkowska. It could undoubtedly add splendour to the underground station in London, Paris or Moscow. It could achieve that thanks to its universal significance. A trained eye, however, will promptly notice its local context. Deprived of obvious relations with Krakow, without the Dragon and the Lajkonik, St. Mary's Tower or the friezes of the Cloth Hall. It does not exude with simple symbolism. This is a non-trivial curtain which will finally conceal the shy image of Galeria Krakowska."

    Rafał Stanowski
    Head of Culture Sections at Dziennik Polski and Gazeta Krakowska, Editor responsible for "Magnes" cultural magazine

    About the winning project : "The winning work has the chance not only to change the appearance of the shopping mall, but also the gates of the city, which is the area near the Railway Station. From now on, the passengers getting off trains and buses will be welcomed not by a white, devoid of deeper meaning wall, but rich in motives artistic work. The pedestrians will see with their own eyes that they are in the City of Culture. The success of Mall Wall Art, to which over 500 works were sent, shows what great potential is hidden in street art. The large format art, which has left galleries and entered the streets, attracts more attention than the most impressive advertisements. Artists rule in the 21st century."

    Mariusz Waras
    Mural artist, Assistant Lecturer in the Faculty of Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk

    About the winning project: "The outcome of the competition may be quite shocking in relation to expectations. The project is monochromatic, abstract, sculpting and highly decorative. These features, with all certainty, distinguish it from other large format works in Poland. The choice is a fashion breakout towards colourful, figurative murals, which already are quite numerous. This realization will certainly bring life to the box-like body of the shopping mall, making its structure more dynamic."

    Michał Bieżyński
    Artistic Director of Urban Forms Foundation

    About the winning project: "I am personally very pleased with the choice of the competition jury. From the very beginning I claimed that the only reasonable artistic solution for a mural on the shopping mall wall would be an abstract. In this case, the nature of the chosen work is more sculpting, but fully meets my assumptions. I feared that the winning project would be maintained in a excessively garish, even motley colour scheme and the subject matter would be trivial and infantile. However, the chosen work is very toned down, and I would even say, a refined project. I am all for it."


    Competition Organizer


    ECE Projektmanagement Polska sp. z o. o., located in Warsaw at ul. Fabryczna 5, further referred to as the ‘Organizer', announces a competition for a large format mural, further referred to as ‘the Mural' which shall be painted on the façade of the Galeria Krakowska building facing the railway station at ul. Pawia 5 in Krakow.

    Competition Participants


    1. The invitation to participate in the competition is primarily forwarded to visual artists and mural painters although it is an open competition.
    2. The participants of the competition can be adult individuals residing in Poland or abroad as well as design teams whose members shall be bound by an agreement signed by all team members for the purpose of executing the joint venture. In respect to the work submitted by design teams, the condition for their participation is a clear indication of the team's representative authorized to act on behalf of its team members and the submission of a full and complete list of all team members.
    3. A participant can send not more than three designs. Also a design team can send not more than three designs and the remaining team members cannot participate in the competition as individual competition participants.
    4. Entry of the design to the Organizer is free of charge.
    5. The employees of the Organizer are forbidden to participate in the competition as well as members of the Competition Jury and members of their families.


    Object of the Competition


    1. The object of the competition is a mural design which shall be painted on the façade of the Galeria Krakowska building in Krakow. The design must include an outline of the walls on which the mural shall be painted. The dimensions of these walls are specified in Annex No. 1 to these Rules and regulations.
    2. The design should describe in detail the colouring and the technique of the Mural.
    3. The design cannot include any political, religious, erotic, xenophobic and racist contents or any whatsoever contents commonly considered as offensive.
    4. The participant is obliged to submit his work together with his portfolio including his current design and created works, short biographical note as well as contact information: name, surname, (and/or pen name), residential and mailing address, e-mail address and telephone number.


    Competition Schedule


    1. The deadline for delivering competition works is 28th February 2013. Works shall be delivered electronically via competition application registration at All works registered via competition application will be possible to view on-line from the moment they are be accepted until the announcement of competition results. The date of registration is the date decisive for its acceptance via competition application and following compliance with the imposed requirements as mentioned in §3.
    2. The competition results shall be declared not later than by 31st March 2013.
    3. The results of the competition shall be announced via electronic mail (e-mail sent to competition participants) and printed on the Organizer's website:


    Evaluation of Entries


    1. The Artistic Director of the competition is responsible for evaluating compliance with the requirements according to §3 and the acceptance of entries.

    2. The evaluation of works and awarding the winning design is conducted under the procedure as mentioned in § 5 point 2 by the Competition Jury composed of:

    1. Ryszard Wysokiński - Director of Galeria Krakowska
    2. Maria Anna Potocka - Managing Director of the Museum of the Contemporary Art in Krakow (MOCAK)
    3. Jacek Stokłosa -Chief Art Consultant of the City of Krakow
    4. Magdalena Sroka - Deputy Mayor of the City of Krakow
    5. Iza Helbin - Director of Krakow Festival Bureau
    6. Zbigniew Bajek - Professor of the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow
    7. Artur Wabik - Mural artist, Artistic Director of the Competition
    8. Dawid Hajok - Journalist of Gazeta Wyborcza
    9. Rafał Stanowski - Journalist of Dziennik Polski and Gazeta Krakowska
    10. Mariusz Waras - Mural artist, Assistant Lecturer in the Faculty of Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdańsk
    11. Michał Bieżyński - Artistic Director of Urban Forms Foundation


    During the first stage of voting each member of the Competition Jury shall award between 1 to 5 points for each accepted and entered design. Three designs shall enter the second stage of the competition, i.e. those which receive (each one separately) the highest number of points (summed for each design). These works shall be once again evaluated in the second stage of the competition. Each member of the Competition Jury shall award only one, two or three points (the number of points cannot be awarded twice) to one of the designs in the second stage of the competition. The author of the design awarded the highest number of points in the second stage of the competition shall be considered as the winner. The Artistic Director shall select the winner of the competition in the case of an equal number of points.

    3. The decisions of the Artistic Director and the Competition Jury are final and irrevocable. There shall be no appeal from the verdict.




    1. Entering the competition the Participant thus confirms his/her copyrights to the entered design and states that he/she does not infringe the copyrights of any third party.
    2. Entering the competition the Participant thus grants the Organizer permission to publicise the entered design, the author's name, surname (or pen name) on the Organizer's website:, as well as in mass media (Internet, social networks, newspapers, television, etc.) and in the Organizer's own promotional materials.
    3. Entering the competition the Participant states that in the case of winning the competition (within the frames of remuneration - award) he/she shall transfer to the Organizer all transferable copyrights to the design in all areas of life (based on a separate agreement).


    Duties and Remuneration of the Competition Winner


    1. The Author of the awarded design shall receive a reward (remuneration) in the net amount of 20,000 PLN (say: twenty thousand Polish Zlotys). The Organize shall pay the tax to the competition winnings.
    2. The Author of the awarded design is obliged to receive the reward in person, participate in a press conference organized on this occasion, and participate in all other media events, such as interviews, photo sessions, video recordings, etc.
    3. Painting the mural on the basis of the awarded design shall be subject to a separate agreement. The author of the awarded design shall have the possibility to supervise the paining of the design in compliance with the conditions agreed with the organizer set in a separate agreement.
    4. The Author of the awarded design undertakes to be present at the location of the mural to be painted during the process of transferring the awarded design onto the wall.
    5. The Organizer shall cover the costs of materials necessary for painting the mural and the work costs.


    Final Provisions


    1. The Organizer reserves the right to exclude from the competition all the design that shall not comply with the requirements specified in §3.
    2. The Organizer reserves the right to abandon transferring the awarded design onto the Wall without providing any reasons for that decision.
    3. The Organizer of the competition reserves the right to correct the awarded design following consultations with the author only for the purpose of the final transfer adaptation of the design to the wall.
    4. The Organizer reserves the right to display logos on the Wall on which the mural shall be painted or on the neighbouring walls of the Mural.
    5. The Organizer reserves the right to present and publish the entered competition design for marketing purposes.
    6. The Organizer reserves the right to process and use the data of the competition Participants for marketing purposes.
    7. Entering the competition implies acceptance of these here rules and regulations.
    8. Any disputes regarding the competition that may arise between the participants and the organizer shall be resolved by a court of law proper for the place of incorporation of the Organizer.