2010 in Warsaw, at the opening of the International Poster Biennial
1917.02.25 Warsaw (PL) - 2014.10.24 Warsaw (PL)
was a polish art historian, art critic, teacher and poster collector.
He studied at the University of Warsaw, finishing in 1968 with a PhD thesis on the history of polish posters. Bojko became well known internationally through his pioneering book New Graphic Design in Revolutionary Russia. He was lecturing internationally about art and graphic design, from Rio de Janeiro in 1998 to Vitebsk, Belarusia, in 2005. He had a teaching position at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence RI (US) between 1984 and 2001 and received an honorary doctorate from that famous art school in 2002.
After returning to Poland, he was a frequent visitor at the Warsaw International Poster Biennal, and contributed an essay to the 2004 Biennial catalogue about "Smart billboards", in which he points out that electronic billboards will probably push aside the traditional paper posters to which we have become so accustomed in the 20th century, and which have become so dear to us.
He also mentions how timidly and reluctantly the art schools are approaching the esthetic and technical challenges of the new technology. Between the lines is the unspoken question what exactly the poster museums will collect once the electronic displays have taken over? Remarkably, Szymon Bojko formulated these prophetic views at the age of 87.
When I last met Szymon Bojko, in 2010, Waldemar Swierzy took me aside and jokingly advised me never to ask Bojko a question unless I had an hour to spare for his answer, "He knows so much", to which Bojko replied "We can always continue our conversation on email". Having known people like Bojko gives me great hope that old age can be an exciting time in your life.