Saturday, 29 September 2012

Back to Łódź, city of culture

Back to Łódź to drop Moni off at her new flat ahead of the new academic year that starts on Monday. She will be living on ul. Piotrkowska, Łódź's main street, a vastly elongated version of Warsaw's Nowy Świat, a street of shops, bars, clubs and restaurants; crumbling stucco and social housing

Łódź is striving to become noticed as a city of creativity. Above: a mural (one of several in the city) decorates a blank wall overlooking a car park on Piotrkowska. Note the boat - the symbol of Łódź (which literally means 'boat' in Polish, ironic since the city's neither on a river nor by the sea). It's worth clicking on the above image to look at the mural in detail - it really is quite something. Can you see the figure in the blue hoodie squatting at the foot of the statue, gazing into his electronic apparatus?

One of many restored palaces on Piotrkowska (no. 143). Can you see the figure in the blue hoodie, sitting in the foreground, gazing into his electronic apparatus? The architecture is noteworthy. Eddie was impressed by several of the larger buildings in Łódź's city centre.

This could be a much nicer city were it not for the large number of scruffy alcoholics that live (rent free) in social housing provided by the city council right in the centre of Łódź. The city has of a quarter of a billion zlotys in unpaid rent; it cannot re-house these people because it doesn't have the money to provide them with alternative accommodation on the outskirts of town. Were the rent collected, the money could be used to renovate the city centre more thoroughly...

A new phenomenon in Łódź is the rising quality of football graffiti. Rather than merely bandy about aggressive and obscene epithets about supporters of the city's two rival clubs, ŁKS and RTS Widzew, a cleverer sort of name-calling has emerged; "ŁKS supporters drive [Daewoo] Ticos" or "RTS supporters didn't cry when the Pope died" are two we saw today.

Above: inside Łódź Film School, where Moni will start her second year on Monday. The  building in the foreground is an old mercury factory. Post-industrial, moderne and 19th Century palatial architecture constitute the campus.

This time last year:
Nine days before the parliamentary elections: PiS had a chance

This time two years ago:
Melancholy mood in Łazienki park, early autumn

This time five years ago:
Flamenco sketches

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Whoever is writing this football graffiti has some good ideas lately. One I heard lately (and I forget the original Polish) was: "XYZ makes tea with old perogi water."