Żyjnia — Wroclaw, Poland
It’s a little difficult to define what Żyjnia is, though its approximate English translation – ‘lifery’ – provides a hint.
Though self-styled as an urban health resort, it is, in fact, one part nonprofit art gallery and two parts social hangout with a hint of a spa. It’s an odd hybrid, but one that works, thanks mostly to Wrocław-based Buck.Studio’s light hand in dressing the ground floor of the Dizajn BWA Wrocław Gallery with tall green translucent drapes, suspended potted ferns and geraniums, and a judicious scattering of bespoke lentil-shaped seats whose low-slung forms fairly float above the floor.
The scent of aromatic herbs wafts out from behind a floor-to-ceiling glass wall to set the mood for an unexpectedly tranquil urban salon that the public can drift into, rest, and regroup whilst sipping herbal infusions before inspecting the gallery’s offerings, including curator Katarzyna Roj’s ever evolving programme of exhibitions and activities that are centred on design, publishing and media.§