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01-24-2011 04:05 PM CET | Arts & Culture

Press release from: CLICK ACADEMY

Julian Tuwim Locomotive poem was for the first time illustrated with pinhole photography. This outstanding example of children's literature has been published in London. Join us at one of our events and get a free copy of the book!

For over 1000 years Poland had been a very multicultural society. Before World War II, Jewish society accounted for 10% of the overall population of Poland and 30% in most major cities. Julian Tuwim was born in Łódź, city in central Poland into a Jewish family. He is one of the most famous authors of children's poetry in Poland and his poetry is widely recognized as being amongst Poland's national cultural treasures. The Locomotive poem was written in 1938, just before the World War II began. It is still very famous for its rhythmical and onomatopoeic language. Almost every Pole will know this charming and entertaining story about a train which setting on its journey. The poem was translated into English by Marcel Weyland.

The Locomotive book was prepared in an untypical manner. In order to prepare the book for children from every background, Click Academy artist Marta Kotlarska and curator Olga Glazik collaborated with a group of Polish young people. The group dedicated their free time and has worked really hard since mid October 2010 all in order to produce a beautifully illustrated, bilingual, professionally-printed picture book for children using an unusual technique called pinhole photography. They planned public events scenarios and designed various tools such as a super-sized version of the book, games and music activities with musical instruments and a specially-prepared nursery rhyme song in order to make events as engaging as possible for kids. The book has had 1,500 copies printed and is being distributed for free during public events taking place in London Libraries and other centres for children and learning.

All the events promoting the book are designed for children age 3-7. Participants have an opportunity to make their own trains, learn and sing a Locomotive song especially created for the events, read the story using a gigantic book and make the various sounds also using the instrument created by them in order to imitate the sounds of a train. Every child receives a free copy of the book after each event.

The books already have started to be distributed in London. The first hosting venues were Church Street library in the London borough of Westminster and at Topolski Century on the South Bank where Click Academy promoted it on 31 December and 16 January. The aim is to reach as wide a public as possible and also to introduce the book to schools with a high frequency of Polish children in order to help them to learn the English language.

The "Locomotive" project is financially supported by The Embassy of the Republic of Poland, Polish Cultural Institute and Mediabox. The project has also received references from The Board of Deputies of British Jews as well as Michael Schudrich, Chief Rabbi of the Jewish Community in Poland.

Click Academy (Akademia Pstryk) was founded by photographer and artist Marta Kotlarska. It is an art group using pinhole photography as a means of social change through empowering communities. Since 2004 we have been working with young people from ethnic minority groups, to address the issues they face. (

Under our supervision, children living in the poorest borough of Warsaw (Poland) were preparing illustrations of a famous Warsaw legend, the exhibition of which was shown in major Warsaw public spaces including Tube stations, the Central Train station and billboard stands around the city. We also prepared a series of public events and pinhole-made animations about Warsaw with them, which were used in an e-guide about the capital of Poland. Young people were encouraged to participate in project planning and in all stages of delivering the project. As a result they felt responsible for the project and learnt that if they work hard they are able to achieve something spectacular. They gave a lot of interviews in press, radio and TV both locally and nationally.

Since 2006 we have been working with traditional Roma settlements in Southern Poland (Małopolska region). Our Nowy Sacz settlement project exhibition was part of EYID UK (European Year of Intercultural Dialog) and was awarded as the best art activity of Gypsy, Roma and Travellers History Month in 2008.

In 2008 (Click Academy) Akademia Pstryk along with the Children's Society, delivered the Roma Picture Book project. We worked with Roma children aged 7 to 14 years, hailing from Poland and Slovakia although momentarily living in the borough of Newham in London. We produced a children's picture book, 'Romano Bumburumbum', which expresses Roma culture. It was distributed for free via a series of public exhibitions and street art workshops where the public was invited to engage with the Roma culture and traditions. The project was a great success and received rave professional reviews. It is presented by Everybody Writes as one of the most inspiring projects in the country. The books are now on the shelves in Newham libraries and available for loans.

Events calendar

Children's Event

The Discover

23rd Jan'11

am & pm

383-387 High Street,

Stratford, London E15 4QZ

Children's Event

Mayfair Library

4th Feb'11


25 South Audley Street,

London W1K 2PB

Children's Event

Orpington Library

12th Feb'11


The Priory, Church Hill,

Orpington BR6 0HH

Children's Event

Bromley Central Library

12th Feb'11


High Street, Bromley


Children's Event

Anerley Library

12th February


Anerley Town Hall,

Anerley Rd,

Anerley SE20 8BD

Children's Event at Jewish Book Week

Jewish Museum

13th Feb'11


Raymond Burton House,

129-131 Albert Street,

Camden Town, London


Children's Event Edmonton Green

Library (Enfield) 19th Feb 2.30-3.15pm 36-44 S Mall, London N9 0TN



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