THE POLISH ARCHIVE OF HOME FILMS is a long-term project carried out by Filmoteka of the Museum of Modern Art (MSN) in Warsaw and the Friends of the Museum. The project is focused on collecting, digitizing and making available private home films about everyday life created in post-war Poland. The films were mainly made on 8- and 16-mm tapes. Its mission is to save existing, often forgotten tapes. The films are a unique record not only of family histories – weddings, First Communions, funerals or holiday trips – but also of post-war Poland, captured by the eye of amateur filmmakers. We treat the materials donated to the Polish Archive of Home Films not only as a record of intimate micro-memory but also as a collection of memories of a bygone era recorded on silent film tapes. The archive will expand over the next few years and descriptions will be added to films. It will be also transferred to the new building of the Museum of Modern Art on plac Defilad.
The initiator of the project is an artist and a film director, Maciej Drygas, who defines the nature of the project as follows:
“Homemade eights, super eights, sixteens.
Without the sound.
A silent testimony of our time.
A unique record of the ground-floor history of Poland.
Free from journalistic context.
Family celebrations, holidays, trips, work, pilgrimages, funerals, demonstrations, school…
But also a simple record of everyday life.
Often captured with an unskilled amateur hand.
Pure and selfless.
Unstamped with artistic stigma.
Created for the loved ones.
So that the memory survives.
The shortest one.
Micro-memories of home history.
Marked by coarse grain.
Often faded and yellowed.
Paused on splices.
Folded in cans and boxes.
In attics and in cellars.
Difficult to reproduce.
The history of the intelligent and the unintelligent.
Registered in the homes of persecuted and persecutors.
Our common. Ecumenical.
Common, but single.
Joyful and depressing.
Urban and provincial.
Feminine and masculine.
Distant and less distant.
I would like to find a home for the needy.
Save from oblivion.
Eights, Super Eights, Sixteens.
To re-record and to describe.
For everyone… “.
Initiator: Maciej Drygas
Curators: Katarzyna Karwańska, Łukasz Ronduda
Coordination: Aniela Trojanowska, Michał Borowik
Cooperation: Katarzyna Prokesz
Authors of the texts: Michał Banasiak (MB), Paulina Brzezińska (PB), Katarzyna Nowak (KT), Aniela Trojanowska (AT)
Editing/proof-reading: Katarzyna Głowińska (Lingventa)
Translation: Weronika Dziatkiewicz (Lingventa)
Website design: Michał Szota
Organizers: Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, Friends of the Museum
Partners: Fixafilm, Okonakino Foundation, Docs Against Gravity Film Festival
Co-financed by the Ministry of Culture, National Heritage and Sport from the Culture Promotion Fund – a state special-purpose fund as well as by the Polish Film Institute from the Film Culture Promulgation Program.