Kumzits was a programme of site-specific public art produced over distance and commissioned for the 30th Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow (June 25th – July 4th, 2021)
We have missed being able to get together, so we created “Kumzits”, which means campfire in Hebrew. A group of us from Jerusalem, Berlin and Krakow developed eight art projects in public space. They were our proverbial campfire. Although most of us could not make it here in person, we were all around Kazimierz. And you came and spent a moment with us.
Kumzits was a collaborative experimental project between Berlin, Jerusalem and Krakow. It showed eight public art projects and urban interventions around Kazimierz, the historical Jewish quarter in the center of Krakow, ranging from sculpture, installations and posters to audio walks, live drawing sessions and participatory embroidery. Ten artists from Berlin and Jerusalem were invited to create site-specific artworks over distance, in close collaboration with other artists, local craftspeople, performers and mediators, and the curatorial team.
The programme took place as a part of the Krakow Jewish Culture Festival, the largest presentation of contemporary Jewish culture, as well as one of the most important cultural events in Krakow and in Poland. In line with the main theme of the 30th edition of the festival in 2021 – fire – it was titled after the Hebrew term for campfire, kumzits קומזיץ. Derived from the Yiddish words קום (come) and זיץ (sit), the word was originally used to describe an outdoor communal meal or gathering around a fire.
Within this project, the term is re-contextualized as a concept for communal experience in a time when physical gathering is no longer a given.
photos: Edyta Dufaj, Karolina Moskała, Michał Ramus
video: Dawid Makiel, Eventstream
graphic design: Studio Otwarte