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Nomus edifice.
photo: D. Werner


In October 2021, we opened NOMUS, the New Art Museum, as a branch of the National Museum in Gdańsk's Department of Modern Art. This was the culmination of a project which the Museum's team had worked on for several years. We would like to thank once again everyone involved in this multi-aspect process. Thanks are also due to Ms Aneta Szyłak, the Head of NOMUS until the end of 2021, for her efforts.

At the same time, we would like to tell about the actual situation concerning the change of the head of the NOMUS department. This is due to, among other things, the retirement of Ms Aneta Szyłak requested in writing in March 2021. In her notice, Ms Aneta Szyłak included a request for the termination of employment by agreement of the parties due to her retirement on 1 January 2022, which the Museum's Director agreed to in writing. This way, the termination of employment on the date specified by Ms Aneta Szyłak came into force.

Simultaneously, in recognition of Ms Aneta Szyłak's merits in creating NOMUS, the Management of the Museum offered further collaboration in a different form related to the performance of new activities under civil law contracts, which Ms Aneta Szyłak agreed to. As a result of these arrangements, from January to March this year, Ms Aneta Szyłak has been performing such work as curator tours of the Collection in Action exhibition. Furthermore, the Head of NOMUS, when she was still a Museum employee, expressed a readiness to prepare the team to work independently and run the department's substantive matters. In recent weeks there have been further arrangements about the forms which future substantive collaboration may take. This is why we find it surprising and incomprehensible that Ms Aneta Szyłak now disputes the earlier agreements concerning her further substantive involvement in the work of NOMUS.

The Management of the National Museum in Gdańsk never questioned Ms Aneta Szyłak's contribution to the founding of NOMUS, most of all, her concept of the institution's substantive profile, which we intend to keep. She is also the author of NOMUS' name, supervised the creation of NOMUS' visual identity and first website, and took part in the work of the Acquisition Commission for the Gdańsk Modern Art Collection established by the City of Gdańsk. However, we cannot agree to a narrative where NOMUS' opening and operation are presented as a success of one person because such a presentation of the case does not correspond to reality. The multifaceted preparations to open the new institution involved the work of over 60 people, the Museum's staff, external collaborators and several companies. The City of Gdańsk has played a crucial role in this success by providing the building that houses NOMUS, funding its refurbishment, and sponsoring purchases for the Gdańsk Modern Art Collection for several years now. Both organisers of the National Museum in Gdańsk, the Marshal of the Pomorskie Voivodship and the Minister of Culture and National Heritage, assigned significant funds for NOMUS' development and operation. We hope that our joint efforts have resulted in creating a new important place on the map of Polish contemporary art. Ms Aneta Szyłak was the co-creator of this success, and we hope she remains so.

Today, NOMUS has a curating team that is carrying out the programme foreseen for 2022 and is planning projects for 2023; it has an ongoing working relationship with the education, marketing, publishing, and other departments. Soon, we plan to announce a competition for the position of the director of this department of the Museum.

We would like to once again thank Ms Aneta for the work she put into the founding of NOMUS, together with the entire team of the National Museum in Gdańsk.                                                                                                                                                   
Management of the National Museum in Gdańsk

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