Agata Madejska

For Now

Agata Madejska, For Now, 2015

photochromic paint, concrete, 100 x 6 x 6 cm. unlimited edition each unique

Agata Madejska uses post-(and)photographic processes, sculptural interventions, and installation, to delve into the multiple ways in which power can be manifest.


Select works


Agata Madejska, Essentials, 2024

Site-specific flooring installation, dimensions variable. Leatherette, plywood, carpet underlay, steel, ring pulls, marbles, money, glitter, keys, whistles, toy cars, personal and found objects., dimensions variable

Memorial A-Z

Agata Madejska, Memorial A-Z, 2013

34 panels, giclée prints on aluminium, 28 panels 16 x 67 cm and 6 panels 16 x 5

Agata Madejska, Pendulum, 2022

4K video
26:10 min

With their liquidus feel, Agata’s works question the smooth façades of language, architecture, and public agreements — forms that hold associative or symbolic value. In turn, she poses deeply philosophical questions which demand viewers to think and re-think how we have come to know not only our world but ourselves in this world-space — how and why.


Exhibitions and series


Grand Habitat Horror Vacui
Flat Time House, London (UK), 2024


Agata Madejska, Essentials, 204

site-specific flooring installation, dimensions variable. Leatherette, plywood, carpet underlay, steel, ring pulls, marbles, money, glitter, keys, whistles, toy cars, personal and found objects., dimensions variable

Agata Madejska’s artwork explores the power structures inherent in language and speech. These explorations are often expressed as sound, sculpture and installation, alongside post-photographic processes. Informed by her personal history, of growing up in and migrating from post-communist Poland, Madejska has responded to the space at Flat Time House by expanding and overlaying these narratives with an exploration of the power dynamics of the domestic and intimate.
—press release 


Commenting on the role of women in post-communist Poland, these works intuit personal histories about domesticity and intimacy, ownership, exile, and migration. Take, for example, her floor sculpture Essentials, 2024, which responds to Latham’s 1975–76 placement at the Scottish Development Agency, where he used aerial photography to investigate postindustrial mountains of mining rubble. Madejska’s piece scatters objects such as matchbox cars, model airplanes, keyrings, coins, and ring-pulls across the venue’s diagonally padded leatherette floor. The installation simultaneously evokes aerial maps, the quilted branding of a Chanel bag, and a children’s play mat. Thus we zoom in and out of Madejska’s performative and post-photographic propositions, walk on or around them, or kneel down for an exercise in sociopolitical excavation.
—Maximiliane Leuschner, 2024


Mistakes Were Made

Mistakes Were Made

Agata Madejska, Mistakes Were Made, 2018

installation: fabric, steel, nylon fishing line, vinyl, speakers, cables, media player, dimensions variable

Agata’s ongoing series of installations Mistakes Were Made first shown in the solo exhibition Modified Limited Hangout (2018) at the Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven (Germany) before being shown at Art Night (2019) and then in a group exhibition I dialogue, Kinch (2021) at Belmacz, London.


Composed of fabric panelling, a dark oval floor and monotone audio, the installation is somewhat adaptive to the environment (both physically and politically) in which it is shown. For example, in her Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven exhibition, the installations fabric panels became a roof of sorts under which a viewer could stand to be enveloped by the sound being emitted from the piece; in Agata’s Art Night presentation, these panels became walls, again wrapping around a viewer to create a semi-porous architecture and sensorial atmospheric.


The atmosphere accentuated through Mistakes Were Made is a reflection of Agata’s engagement with the rhetoric and pathos of political speeches – a somewhat semi-porous architecture in itself. Situated within the installation, viewers hear a monotone voice reciting transcriptions of political speeches made between 2016 and 2022. Range from Barack Obama’s last State of the Union Address to Liz Truss’ acceptance and resignation speeches made following her record-breaking run as the British Prime Minister, each speech used in the iterations of Mistakes Were Made has been subtly re-worked by Agata to remove any reference to policy and wider political activities. Following this re-working what is left, and what viewers hear, is an almost poetic cloud of linguistic persuasion; with each speech becoming a self-affirming monologue, where the narrators reflect on their seemingly private matters, fragile future plans and ominous relationships.


(click the excerpt below to hear an example of the audio.) 

Agata Madejska, Mistakes Were Made , 2018 - date

installation audio excerpt

Mistake Were Made, drawings

Mistake Were Made, drawings

Agata Madejska, Mistake Were Made, drawings, 2018—date

light sensitive emulsion on paper. Installation view, Modified Limited Hangout, Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven, 2018.

Building on her interest in the ways language becomes architectural, Agata’s Mistake Were Made, drawings reflect on the ways in which the political voice is nothing more than a pattern of persuasion. Speckled rouge through ghost grey, these photo-sensitive sketches translate the emotions bound up within rigid governmental speeches (those used in here installation Mistake Were Made) into two-dimensional apparitions; unmooring the signifying power of words to create profane clouds of sensation.


No Meat Without Bones
Belmacz, London (UK), 2022

Agata Madejska, No Cars No Power, 2022

4K video/audio
4:34 min

“My work has always questioned how we grow within systems — personal, cultural, political — and how we navigate these. The project, No Meat Without Bones (exhibited at Belmacz, London 2022), has been spurred on by the observation of contemporary political narratives. Specifically, the acute radicalisation of post-truth rhetoric and how this has been enmeshed within virtual disinformation. Looking at this changing political landscape, I saw connections to earlier moments of political fluctuation; connections that made me reflect on my own relationship with ideological narratives.”
—Agata Madejska, 2022

“Coming from the photographic background, I see an exhibition as a series of fragments and crops, simulations and possibilities, interrelations and dependencies — images / mirages. How these fragments are shown — both formally and contextually — allows them to be in conversation with one another; or at least my aim in the exhibitions I make is for them to cross-pollinate one another and to allow us to see beyond a flat plan.”
—Agata Madejska, 2022


Modified Limited Hangout
Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven, Germany, 2018

Agata Madejska

installation view, Modified Limited Hangout, Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven, Germany, 2018

The year 2018 is the 100th anniversary of the sailors’ uprising that started in Wilhelmshaven and brought about the beginning of the revolution in Germany. Artists, architects and writers also participated in the process of finding a radical new beginning. With the exhibition Modified Limited Hangout,  Agata examined the position of the individual in society and within political systems today. For the exhibition, she transformed the space of the Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven into a microcosm in which site-specific installations, works on paper, photographs, light-sensitive objects and sculptures flow together into a whole.


(further information about Modified Limited Hangouts at Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven

“Agata Madejska construes politicalness first and foremost as a dynamic of human activities. It is politicalness that organizes the space of human life. The tensions and bulges of this space, which can be different in terms of organization, but its undersoil, its building material is always the same, will continue until history ends, as Fukuyama wanted to believe until recently.”
—Jakub Śwircz, 2019. Changes in the Ocean. On the Art of Agata Madejska 




Agata Madejska, Rise

Lingering in photochemical smog, Agata’s series RISE, 2018, depicts phantom-like towers, be these homes or offices. Instead of rendering these man-made monoliths pure and visible Agata leans into photographic processes to give these architectural forms a sense of harrow magnitude. Rendered within clouds of grey mist, here Agata explores our dependencies upon appearance, as well as our relationships between the individual and the collective; that is, between the private and the public.


Tender Offer

Agata Madejska, 2017

installation view, Parrotta Contemporary Art, Stuttgart

In her series Tender Offer, 2017, Agata was drawn to the architectural, political and ideological space of the City of London. Over centuries this area of the City has been granted political and judicial privileges, a status which has been embraced by the financial and investment sector. The boundaries of this privileged financial space is marked by 11 iron-cast dragons placed on tall plinths, which Agata has photographed here as a way of questioning how power manifests physically.


As Anna Gritz writes:
“In her new series, Madejska focuses on these curious insignias of power through photographing the dragons from below using a close crop of the testicles in question. The perspective of the wandering observer is one that she has occupied herself on her many walks of the perimeters of the city, walks that she has been undertaking with increased frequency in the wake of the EU referendum, pondering the City’s stake and role in the pending divorce.”
—Anna Gritz, 2017. Ballsy




Agata Madejska, Technocomplex

installation view, Technocomplex, Parrotta Contemporary Art, Stuttgart, 2017

‘Technocomplex’ is a term Agata has borrowed from archaeology. It refers to a collection of found objects from a specific cultural period within a certain geographical space. In her series of light-sensitive concrete sculptures, Technocomplex, 2017, Agata makes physical something of the alchemical sensations that give weight to the concrete forms shaping our movements through life. Read as deformed monuments, the series disavowals form from its context and meaning, opening up a line of thought that questions the atrophy of public trust, the relationships we have with objects as well as our surroundings.


DeBeers I

Agata Madejska, DeBeers I, 2017

giclée print on Hahnemühle Photo Rag Ultra Smooth, 150 x 260 cm


Near Here, Not Here, Come Here, Over Here, Right Here, Here We Are



Agata Madejska, 2014

installation view, Form Norm Folly, Krefelder Kunstverein

Agata sees objects as a space for the projection of ideas. Her series Folly, 2014, consists of concrete and plaster cast forms each coated in photochemical pigment. As light conditions change within the place of their installation, the colour of these forms shifts to directly respond to both the architecture of the setting as well as the presence of viewers. In this way, the works made solid something of the hidden atmospherics of our surroundings; the social and political ideologies that suffuse everyday life.




Agata Madejska, Factum, 2014

UV-print on perspex, paper, powder-coated steel frame, installation view

“After looking at the abstract composi tion on clear acrylic for some time I realise I am viewing the fallout from an explosion. In a second of the tables I can now see Lenin upside-down in duplicate and soldiers off to battle in a third. But the subject of Madejaka’s Factum are not these historical figures and events but rather the skewed attempt to represent this history in physical space. The original reliefs from the Soviet War Memorial in Berlin’s Treptower Park were produced twice, accompanied by German and Russian texts. With photographic reproductions of both iterations, the slight differences between the two versions are overlaid in green and rod. Whilst the acrylic reflects the work’s physical surroundings, Madejska simultaneously uses a symbolic structure of public space as a mirror for contemporary society.”
—Gareth Bell-Jones, 2015. PostcART


The Order of Solids


Agata Madejska, 81-86, 2010

digital C-type print on Forex and waxed black MDF, 119 x 162.7 cm

Isolated objects, monuments, sculptures and fountains, demarcated from their environment through careful monochromatic saturation. In her series of almost black and white photographic prints, The Order of Solids, begun in 2010, Agata builds on her interest in the function of objects in public space; how a monument embodies a narrow cultural context and specific point of view now manifest in the physical world. The series demonstrates Agata’s interest in how sculptural forms and photography can intersect. Specifically, how through photography a static object, and cultural ideal, can be expanded before our eyes.


Temporary or Permanent

Image III

Agata Madejska, Image III, 2011

part of the photo essay Temporary or Permanent, published in: Museum Folkwang. Die Architektur, Edition Folkwang, Steidl, Göttingen, 2012

Temporary or Permanent, 2011, is composed of a number of quiet photographers Agata took of the Museum Folkwang’s collection and gallery spaces bare and empty of visitors. Compiled in the 2012 photo essay published by the museum, the images imbue Museum Folkwang’s space and canonical artworks with a sense of suspense. In this way, these images rise questions about how histories are recorded and communicated to a public, asking us to see beyond the picture and frame.



Agata Madejska

installation view, Parrotta Contemporary Art, Stuttgart, 2013

Urban icons rising high into white space. The photos that compose Agata’s series Ideogram (2008–2009) each depict a solitary high-rise building prominent in the city of their construction. Isolated from the atmospheres of their surrounding city space, these building portraits not only loom monumental but coolly hang as somewhat ambiguous bodies; icons of no-where or the spectors of capitalist (re)production.



Agata Madejska

installation view, Gute Aussichten: Junge Deutsche Fotografie, Haus der Fotografie, Deichtorhallen, Hamburg, 2008.

“Photographs by Agata Madejska, which belong to the ‘kosmos’ (‘Universe’) series depict the unique moment when our eyes make out subtly illuminated shapes amid the dark abyss of oblivion and neglect. At first these shapes are abstract; they resemble nothing meaningful. But as time passes, they form into numerous pictures – shapes of swings, slides, and playgrounds – familiar motifs of childhood memories. The artist draws from widely familiar concepts embedded within historical, social and cultural memory. She relies upon the associations these concepts evoke, thereby triggering our memory, forgetfulness, and things that are conscious and subconscious within us.”
—Dobromiła Błaszczyk, 2015. Everything Happened In The Distance…




Parrotta Contemporary Art, 2017


portfolio N°9
Kunstraum Seilerstraße, Hamburg, 2016


madejska, agata. agata madejska.
Distanz Publishing, 2013


Artist bio

The dream was to travel

Agata Madejska, The dream was to travel, 2021

hand poured candle

Agata Madejska (b.1979, Warsaw, Poland), graduated from Folkwang University of the Arts, Essen in 2007 and the Royal College of Art, London in 2010.



Selected exhibitions include: Grand Habitat Horror Vacui, Flat Time House, London (2024); No Meat Without Bones, Belmacz, London (2022); I Dialogue, Kinch, Belmacz, London (2021); Mother Mercury, Art Night, London (2019); Modified Limited Hangout, Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven (2018); Technocomplex, Parrotta Contemporary Art, Stuttgart (2017); Place. Tlomackie 3/5, Jewish Historical Institute, Warsaw (2017); Entoptic Screening, Galeria ASP, Warsaw (2016); Johanna Jaeger & Agata Madejska, Kunstraum griffelkunst, Hamburg (2016); Kingly Things, Chandelier Projects, London (2015); Conflict, Time, Photography, Museum Folkwang, Essen, Albertinum Dresden (2015) and Tate Modern, London (2014); Form Norm Folly, Kunstverein Krefeld, Krefeld (2014); Twisted Entities, Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen (2013); Man and his Objects, Museum Folkwang, Essen (2012); Made in Germany Zwei, kestnergesellschaft, Hannover (2012); Menos tiempo que lugar, Palacio National de las Artes, Buenos Aires (2010); reGeneration 2, Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne (2010) and Aperture, New York (2011); Bloomberg New Contemporaries, ICA, London (2010); Menos tiempo que lugar, Centro de Arte Contemporaneo, Quito, Ecuador (2009); Agata Madejska, allerArt, Bludenz (2009); gute aussichten 2007/2008, Goethe Institut, Washington D.C., USA (2008); XIII European Photography Prize Riccardo Pezza, Triennale di Milano, Italy (2008); The poetry of the functional, SMWK, Dresden, Germany (2007); Kodak Nachwuchs Förderpreis, Haus der Wirtschaft, Stuttgart, Germany (2007); Agata Madejska, Projektraum Mikro, Düsseldorf, Germany (2006); Menos tiempo que lugar, Centro de Arte Contemporaneo, Quito, Ecuador (2009); Agata Madejska, allerArt, Bludenz (2009); gute aussichten 2007/2008, Goethe Institut, Washington D.C., USA (2008); XIII European Photography Prize Riccardo Pezza, Triennale di Milano, Italy (2008); The poetry of the functional, SMWK, Dresden, Germany (2007); Kodak Nachwuchs Förderpreis, Haus der Wirtschaft, Stuttgart, Germany (2007); Agata Madejska, Projektraum Mikro, Düsseldorf, Germany (2006).



Agata was awarded the renowned Contemporary German Photography award by the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen and Halbach Foundation in 2008 and the Emerging Artist Award of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia in 2011. She has also been the recipient of public funding awards in both the UK and Germany.



Agata lives and works in London.


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