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Akademia Ruchu, Chinese Lesson, 2013. Image courtesy of Akademia Ruchu.

Operating at the juncture of theater, performance, film and fine art, Akademia Ruchu (The Academy of Movement), has presented over six hundred happenings, theater performances, political actions and anonymous interventions in the public realm, in which the spectators became part of the work. Known as the "theater of behavior," Akademia Ruchu creates opportunities to provoke an unpredictable reaction from accidental spectators who had not planned to take part in an art project that day, which leaves a much greater mark on the individuals involved than on anyone else who purchases a ticket to passively watch a performance in a theater.

Founded by Wojciech Krukowski, the collective's artistic director, the group consists of artist members Janusz Baldyga, Jolanta Krukowska, Cezary Marczak, Jan Pieniazek, Zbigniew Olkiewicz, Jaroslaw Zwirblis, and Krzysztof Zwirblis. For forty years Akademia Ruchu has engaged in astute reflection on Communist and post-Communist Poland. The group has been a political sounding board in Poland since its establishment in 1973 in Warsaw.

The first period of Akademia Ruchu's initiatives (1973-88) consisted of actions beyond the censorship of the totalitarian regime in Poland during this time. Political repression became a source of inspiration. Akademia Ruch's activity was created by means of anonymous performances, installations purposefully interfering with the tedium of life in the city, and actions aimed at stimulating the citizens and activating a sense of civil expression. The collective wanted to propose creative examples of independent reaction to reality. The second period from 1989 until the present is only different from the first by democratization, and political and economic transformation.

Akademia Ruchu has presented its works at theatre festivals and on tour in almost all countries of Europe, the Americas and in Japan, at such prominent institutions as the Institute of Contemporary Art in London, dOCUMENTA 8 in Kassel, NRL Live Art in Glasgow, MoMA PS1 in New York, Ludwig Forum in Aachen, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Museum of Modern Art in Yokohama, and Walker Art Center in Minneapolis.
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