Miroslaw Balka (b.1958 Warsaw, Poland) is a contemporary Polish sculptor, video and installation artist. He graduated from the Warsaw Academy of Fine Arts (1985). Lives and works in Warsaw, Poland.
Balka is one of Poland's most prominent artists today, with an artistic vocabulary that resounds with the melancholy of the post-Cold War landscape. The origins of the work can be personal and reference the history of his own country; the destruction of its Jewish community during the Holocaust figure prominently. Balka also creates immersive installations that transpose the memory of one space into another. In 2009, Balka installed How It Is, the 10th Unilever Series commission for the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern, London, a giant grey steel structure with a vast dark chamber, which in construction reflects the surrounding architecture. Working with steel, cement, salt, foam rubber and felt, Balka focuses our attention on the elemental origins of his materials while also emphasizing the human labour required to transform those elements into cultural objects. He poses serious questions about European history, memory, truth, and perception.