The Institute of Industrial Design (IWP) was founded in Warsaw in 1950 under the directorship of Wanda Telakowska, who had previously been in charge of the Buiro Nadzoro Estetyki Producji (BNRP, Office for the Supervision of Aesthetic Production, established in 1947) within the Ministry of Culture and Art. The IWP was a state‐funded organization, within the Ministry of Consumer Goods Industry, and was charged with promoting the social and economic significance of design as well as improving standards of design within the furniture, textile, clothing, glass, and ceramic industries. Its slogan in the early years was ‘Everyday Beauty for All’. However, by the 1960s, its outlook embraced an ergonomic approach to the design process and applied a rigorous, scientific, and methodological approach to clothing, interior, and other aspects of design in its research laboratories. Given the restricted nature of consumer markets in Eastern Europe it was understandable that considerable importance was attached to the gathering of ergonomically based data and statistical evidence for manufacturers, often in the form of standards. The IWP was also concerned with industrial design training and education for young designers and consideration of the ways in which folk art designs might be reconciled with mass production. By the time that the Institute of Industrial Design came under the auspices of the Ministry of Scientific and Technical Progress in 1985, the IWP had embraced a number of key areas: design for the disabled, design and furniture for urban and rural housing, design for the work environment, design for industry, and the promotion of design amongst professionals and the public through educational activities and studies of materials. The IWP presents its achievements and research findings through publications, conference presentations, and national and international exhibitions of Polish design. Its publications include Express Information and Design Library, the latter concerned with design history and theory. IWP also established a ‘Good Design’ label for Polish products selected by an interdisciplinary jury of design experts as well as a biennial exhibition devoted to the best designs of young Polish designers. It also has an exhibition gallery and research library with more than 42,000 volumes and 700 national and international periodicals.
Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.