The statuette Genius Cognitio

The Center for Advanced Studies celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2018. The anniversary celebration was highlighted by the creation of the Center for Advanced Studies statuette, called Genius Cognitio (Genius of Cognition), whose attributes symbolically express the Center's mission. The statuette was inspired by a sculptural group called the Apotheosis of Knowledge, crowning the facade of the Main Building of the Warsaw University of Technology.

The sculpture, commissioned by architect Stefan Szyller in the early 20th century, was created by prominent sculptor of the classicizing trend, Pius Weloński (1849-1931). In accordance with the principles of Architecture Parlante of the time, the rich symbolism of the detail allows to recognize the purpose of the building.

The main figure of the allegorical sculptural group is the Genius of Knowledge, who is accompanied by female figures personifying Physics and Architecture (originally Chemistry) and a boy figure, symbolizing young people studying. The Genius holds the „flame of knowledge”, the attribute of Physics is James Watt's regulator, while the figure of Architecture is supported by the capital of a Greek column.

The figure of Genius is associated with Roman mythology, in which Genius functioned as a tutelary deity, an inner spirit, attributed to each person at birth, as well as to the family, each house, place (genius loci), nation, etc. Genius gained special veneration as the tutelary deity of the household, endowing its inhabitants with the success and intellectual power of its followers. In modern parlance, the term "genius" refers to innate, extraordinary abilities that lead to intellectual excellence and exceptional creativity. In art, the genius of a place was depicted as a serpent, while the genius of a person in the form of a winged youth with a horn of plenty.

The Genius Cognitio, which is the crowning glory of the Main Building of the Warsaw University of Technology, is a symbolic protector of the University, spreading the "light of cognition" over the entire University campus, academic staff and students.

The Genius Cognitio is a form of distinction awarded to individuals for their extraordinary personal merits, outstanding achievements and effective cooperation through the years with the Center for Advanced Studies. The laureates of the Distinction were Prof. Włodzimierz Kurnik (Rector of Warsaw University of Technology 2005–2012), Prof. Franciszek Krok (Faculty of Physics WUT) Prof. Kazimierz Stępień (Astronomical Observatory, University of Warsaw) and Prof. Mina Teicher (Bar-Ilan University, Israel).