Maya Gordon


Who are you?…, 2016, 320 × 300 × 50 cm
Balloon: plastic, rope, acrylic, electric pump

Maya Gordon examines the significance of Polish national symbols. The work’s title refers to a famous Polish nursery rhyme – “Who are you? A little Pole / What is your sign? The white eagle” – a patriotic symbol well before Poland regained its independence in 1918, following more than a century of political non-existence. In Poland, patriotism was always moulded by a feeling of being cornered, on the defensive, and the national identity is strongly bound to catholicism (the rhyme above is entitled A Polish Child’s Catechism). Poland’s history is permanently associated with a sense of injustice and uniqueness. The burden of historical tradition is particularly relevant today, when the prevailing views on national identity are highly conservative. Using the language of art, the Polish–Israeli artist expresses all her misgivings regarding limitations and restrictions which can transform symbols into dangerous tools for political manipulation.



Gone with the Wind, 2015, 1’48”

The main character of Maja Gordon’s animation is a relief located in Warsaw’s Constitution Square, one of the prime examples of socialist realist architecture in the Polish capital. The relief commemorates the opening of MDM – the most important residential project of the 1950s, which was built on the ruins of Warsaw. The work shows the procession of a crowd with children, banners and flowers traversing a faithful depiction of the new district. Maya Gordon juxtaposes this image with other marches and demonstrations, through which she shows the cyclical nature of events and different facets of history.

Maya Gordon (b. 1947, Chorzów) – painter, author of installation. In 1957 emigrated to Israel. In the years 1966-70 studied in the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Jerusalem. In the 70s emigrated to Amsterdam and studied at the Academy of Van Eyck in Maastrcht. Since 1972 lives in the Netherland.