The next step in the process of making Bielsko-Biała the European Capital of Culture was taken by selected representatives from the city. On 29 March the first meeting of the Policy Board of the Bielsko-Biała European Capital of Culture 2029 project, appointed by the President of Bielsko-Biała, took place in the session room of the City Hall.
Thirty-one individuals from the broadly defined worlds of culture, promotion and tourism, and respective specialists in their fields make up this esteemed body:
Deputy to the President of Bielsko-Biała, Adam Ruśniak; Chairwoman of the Education and Culture Committee at Bielsko-Biała City Council, Dr Małgorzata Zarębska; Rector of the University of Technology and Humanities in Bielsko-Biała,
Dr Jacek Nowakowski; Director of the Animated Film Studios in Bielsko-Biała, Maciej Chmiel; Director of the Regional Cultural Centre in Bielsko-Biała ,Lesław Werpachowski; Director of the Historical Museum in Bielsko-Biała, Marek Matlak; Director of the BWA Gallery in Bielsko-Biała, Agata Smalcerz; Director of the M. Koterbska Bielsko-Biała Cultural Centre, Małgorzata Chełchowska-Rak; Director of the Polish Theatre in Bielsko-Biała, Witold Mazurkiewicz; Director of the J. Zitzman Banialuka Puppet Theatre, Jacek Popławski; Director of the Beskid Library, Łucja Ruchała; Acting Director of the City Cultural Centre in Bielsko-Biała, Małgorzata Motyka-Madej; Director of the Stanisław Moniuszko National Music Schools in Bielsko-Biała, Barbara Cybulska-Konsek; Director of the Julian Fałat National Art School in Bielsko-Biała, Szymon Kłusek; President of the Board of the Association of Theatre Art, Jerzy Batycki; President of the Photography Centre Foundation, Inez Baturo; President of the Gaja Club Ecology and Culture Association, Jacek Bożek; President of the Board of the Grodzki Theatre Artistic Association, Magdalena Wojtczak; President of the Board of the Bielsko-Biała District Association of Polish Artists and Designers, Mirosław Mikuszewski; President of the Bielsko-Biała History Society, Dr Maciej Bujakowski; President of the Board of the Ludzie-Innowacje-
Design (People-Innovations-Design) Foundation, Jacek Graś; President of the Board of the Ballet Art Foundation, Aleksandra Jurczak; President of the Board of the Zróbmy To (Let’s do this) Foundation, Marzena Kocurek; President of the Board of Temida Arts & Business, Paweł Kotla; President of the Beskid Local Tourist Organization, Marcin Filip; Specialist in musical education; Andrzej Kucybała, Specialist in exhibitions, Iwona Purzycka; Specialist in art history, Prof Ewa Chojecka; Specialist in fashion design, Natasha Pavluchenko; Specialist in design, Zbigniew Michniowski; President of the Board of the Joint Stock Regional Development Agency in Bielsko-Biała, Maciej Jeleń.
All parties accepted their nominations from President Jarosław Klimaszewski on 29 March.
“This is a very important day for me. Thank you for your willingness to accept the invitation to work on this board. It is an important event for the whole city. I believe that bold decisions allow us to achieve great goals. Because if we succeed, this will be a historic moment. We cannot succeed without you. Your achievements in your respective specialist fields prove to me that I can count on each one of you for your support and experience,” Mr Klimaszewski continued. “We set the bar very high. The history of our city reveals that we have already had a textile revolution. In the 1970s we had an automotive industry revolution. I think that it is now time for a cultural one. And I am of this opinion because I am proud of Bielsko-Biała. I know you are too. We have enormous potential. In recent years most of the cultural events in our city have come about of their own volition. This is the potential of our cultural institutions which occupy high positions in the national rankings. I think it is now time to move on to Europe. I invite you all to make this journey. We have a lot of work ahead of us.” Mr Klimaszewski declared.
The Board's tasks included proposing directions for progression of the city's bid for the European Capital of Culture 2029 competition, a narrative framework, the triggering of creative circles in the city, finding partners for activities relating to the city's bid for the title, promoting Bielsko-Biała as a European Capital of Culture and supporting work on strategic documents concerning the development of culture in the city and subsequent implementation of their content.
The first meeting of the new council was held after the nominations were made. The team elected a chairperson and a vice-chairperson from among themselves. The work was to be led by Iwona Purzycka, a specialist in exhibitions, and Adam Ruśniak, Deputy to the city President, was appointed vice-chairman of the committee.
Towns and cities interested in taking part in the competition for the title of European Capital of Culture 2029 were to write of their intention to submit a bid by 14 August this year at the latest. The deadline for submitting bids is 15 September 2023. We will know which city is to be the European Capital of Culture 2029 by the end of 2024.